Gov. Justice submits legislation repealing personal income tax

Governor Justice holds press conference
Governor Justice holds press conference(WSAZ, Governor Jim Justice)
Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 11:18 AM EST|Updated: Mar. 4, 2021 at 4:29 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - After holding several virtual town halls on the matter, Thursday Gov. Jim Justice took the first step in pursuing his State of the State proposal to repeal the state’s personal income tax.

According to Gov. Justice’s office, the governor has submitted a bill to the West Virginia Legislature that he says will “seize a once in a lifetime opportunity to transform West Virginia’s tax structure.”

Gov. Justice says the bill aims to raise wages, raise home values, bring in more businesses and make the state more attractive to home buyers.

“We may never have an opportunity like this ever again,” Gov. Justice said. “Because of how we’ve handled the COVID-19 pandemic – how we’ve saved lives, had the best vaccine program in the nation, and kept our economy on the move – the spotlight of the world is on West Virginia right now. This is the time to seize our opportunity!

The governor claims every West Virginian will benefit from his plan. The governor’s office says all lower income brackets less than $35,000 a year will receive a tax rebate check under the plan. Low income and high-income taxpayers will all see a net positive benefit if this plan is enacted.

“We have all the building blocks in our state. We have an economy that’s truly on the launchpad, some of the greatest people you’ll find anywhere, who are smart, kind, faith-based, and hardworking people, along with four of the best seasons on Earth with more natural beauty than you could possibly imagine. But now we need to make a big move to put us over the top, so when people look at another population map 70 years from now, West Virginia will be right up there with the very top states in the country,” said Gov. Justice. “The last piece of this puzzle is the elimination of our personal income tax. That’s why I am proposing a plan to make this dream a reality starting with a 60% reduction in state income tax for year one.”

According to a press release from the governor’s office, from 1950 to 2016, the total population of the United States doubled. In that same time frame, 49 of 50 states saw their population increase. The only state that lost population in that span was West Virginia. Between 2010 and 2020, West Virginia’s population decreased by 3.8%: the steepest rate of population decline in the country.

For the bill abstract click here.

View the bill here

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