Council passes GET hike

HILO — The Hawaii County Council on Friday passed a one-quarter percent surcharge to the general excise tax.

The county surcharge, raising an estimated $20 million a year, would start Jan. 1, 2019, and end Dec. 31, 2020, under Bill 159.

The council voted 7-2. Voting “no” were North Kona Councilman Dru Kanuha and Puna Councilwoman Jen Ruggles.

The surcharge was a compromise measure after the council earlier postponed a full half-percent tax surcharge allowed by the state Legislature, with a 2030 expiration date.

Because the tax is itself taxed, the .25 percent tax on a $100 purchase would increase by 26 cents, raising the purchase from $104.17 to $104.43, once the 4 percent state GET is also taken into account.

  1. KonaRich June 29, 2018 4:59 pm

    Nothing here to see, it was a foregone conclusion. It will be going up again in the not to near future.

  2. paul June 29, 2018 5:04 pm

    and you thought they would not raise?????where will 20 million go????for welfare???????? salary increases for gov?????

  3. Darin June 29, 2018 6:22 pm

    I’m left wondering if the additional tax period will really expire. Many times these so called “temporary ” taxes somehow seem to get renewed indefinitely. After all, it would be difficult to realign a budget with 20 million less dollars per annum. Hawaii county council, you should know that voters will take notice of your vote.

    1. 4whatitsworth June 30, 2018 11:03 am

      Tax increases do not expire Tax cuts do.

      Effective January 1, 2018 the top three income tax brackets of 9%, 10%, and 11%, repealed a couple of years ago, are reinstated. Old income tax rates were 7.6%, 7.9% and 8.25%.

  4. Raoul Duke II June 29, 2018 6:51 pm

    we all knew it was a forgone conclusion when they said they would vote again at the end of June. Now it’s time to start working oN removing these shiftless grifters in the council…I will work tirelessly to remove Tim Richards one of the worst council members who never met a tax he didn’t vote for. Also his blatant illegal short term rental which he makes $100K on per year and doesn’t disclose on his financial statements while claiming to be a working class hero. Time to run these shiftless grifters out of town and get some new blood on the council. Maybe then we can get some TAX relief instead of more experts at SPENDING OTHER PEOPLES MONEY!

    1. Kawaii June 29, 2018 7:14 pm

      Are you saying it’s $100,000 of unclaimed taxable income?

  5. 4whatitsworth June 29, 2018 8:56 pm

    And so the downward spiral continues. The government will not need to ever work if it can just increase the % tax on everything. Doctors, teachers, and friends leaving Hawaii because it is so expensive and this is a good example why. Try going to DMV or getting a construction permit if you want to see how Hawaii uses your tax dollars.

  6. ghost June 30, 2018 7:15 am

    Thieving politicians at it again. Fire 5,000 government employees and cancel the tax increase. It’s not your F’n money.

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