Governor's Message to the 56th legislature. Page: 11 of 41
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the idea of a general sales tax. After hearing the arguments in the most bitter
fight ever waged on the subject in this Legislature, I became convinced that
since a general sales tax actually amounts to an income tax on those who spend
all they make, but not on those in the upper incomes who make more than they
spend, that eventually it would lead also to a State income tax to equalize the
burden. We have enough income tax from the Federal Government. Therefore,
as one of 56 House members, I helped defeat the sales tax Constitutional
Amendment which the Governor and the House leaders at that time tried on
nine separate votes to force upon the Legislature. In the intervening years,
my views as a House member have been strengthened as I have witnessed State
after State adopting the general sales tax, soon after followed by a state income
tax, so that today 25 States have both, and these are in addition to most of the
selective taxes which we employ.
PROGRAM TO RETIRE DEFICIT
Our first and foremost problem is to retire the anticipated deficit by
August 31, the end of this fiscal year. I recommend that it be treated and
disposed of separately and apart from the needs of the next biennium, because
it is a debt already incurred. It is not a recurring item. If the $65, 000, 000
deficit for this year is lumped together with the needs for the two years of the
next biennium, we would have to levy continuing taxes at a rate one-third higher
than necessary. This would spread our present deficit over a three-year
period, rather than ending it this year and beginning our next biennium with
a clean slate.
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Price, Daniel. Governor's Message to the 56th legislature., book, January 21, 1959; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5870/m1/11/: accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .