DES MOINES, Iowa -- Some love it, others hate it. Iowans from all walks of life and a variety of different industries gathered at the Capitol on Monday night to weigh in on a proposed tax bill. The public hearing lasted for an hour and a half, giving Iowans time to express how they feel about the proposed legislation.
"According to one of the government officials, the federal government is giving us crumbs," said Gary Leffler, a self-employed resident of Windsor Heights. "I look at what the state of Iowa's doing here to cut our taxes, I say you know what, I appreciate what you're doing. You're putting a little gravy on my taters. I told my wife the other day, I said look, if we keep getting crumbs from the federal government and the state of Iowa keeps putting a little gravy on our taters, pretty soon we're gonna have enough to go out and get a meal."
From heaping on praise for the GOP's proposed tax plan to issuing grave concerns and dire warnings, comments at the House Ways and Means Committee's public hearing varied greatly.
"I am here on behalf of our 34,000 members and the students that they serve across the state in our public schools, our area education agencies and our community colleges to express their strong opposition to this bill," said Brad Hudson. "The members of the Iowa State Education Association believe that this bill is illogical and borders on the brink of insanity."
House Study Bill 671 would cut individual income taxes by about $1.7 billion over six years and modify a variety of different taxes from sales and use taxes and the local option sales tax, to the hotel and motel excise tax and the automobile rental excise tax.
But there are still lots of details that need to be hammered out.
"There's a great deal that we agree with between the Senate and the governor and ourselves, so those things are pretty much settled, I would think," said Representative Guy Vander Linden, a Republican from Oskaloosa. "But there's some significant issues that we have to work out between the three and it's just typical legislative sausage making...we'll have to get through it."