Arkansas Lawmakers Hold Special Session To Focus On Governor's Historic Tax Cut Proposal
SPECIAL SESSION ON TAX BREAKS — Arkansas lawmakers held a special joint legislative session yesterday to focus on lowering income taxes for the state’s higher earners. They have advanced a nearly $500 million income tax cut package in support of Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s proposal to lower the state’s top individual income tax rate from 5.9% to 4.9% over a four-year span. House and Senate committees on Tuesday endorsed the proposal, which would be the largest tax cut in Arkansas’ history if enacted. The measure advanced after lawmakers rejected efforts to include a tax credit for law enforcement officers. The credit is among several proposals some GOP lawmakers are hoping to add to the session’s agenda. Expanding the session’s scope to take those proposals up would take a two-thirds vote of the Legislature, the main agenda for this special session was set by Governor Hutchinson who defended his actions during a press conference yesterday.
"This is what is set forth in our constitution, it is a balance of power that we have. It's worked well for over 100 years and I hope it works in this session," Hutchinson said. "And I applaud the leadership and the members that from today's vote seem to be focused on keeping it on target. We want to recognize the significant and historic role of these tax cuts.'
Lawmakers will convene again this morning in Little Rock to possibly advance the governor’s tax cut proposal as well as other bills relating to state funding, insulin rebates, and a bill that would allow legislators to employ security personnel.