Siddoway hints at big changes to House tax bill

The Idaho Reports team got a cryptic look at things to come this morning.

We ran into a grinning Sen. Jeff Siddoway, R-Terreton, in the hallway and asked his thoughts on House Bill 311, Rep. Mike Moyle’s sweeping bill on grocery tax, fuel tax, and flat income tax, being sent to the Senate Transportation Committee instead of Local Government and Taxation, the committee Siddoway chairs.

“That’s fine,” he said. “Everything will happen like it should.”

Siddoway spoke earlier in the session about not hearing a tax cut until starting teacher pay is raised to $40,000. He confirmed the speculation: That leadership had sent the bill to the transportation committee to bypass him, as he would have declined to hold a hearing for the bill in the first place. (“Duh,” he said to the question.)

But he’s not concerned, he said, alluding to changes the Senate might make to the legislation. “It went to the transportation committee, so it’ll probably look like a transportation bill,” he said.

That might not sit well with House leadership. During his closing remarks yesterday, Moyle responded to concerns that the legislation is unconstitutional because it deals with too many issues. “This is a tax bill,” Moyle said.

That said, it might not be a surprise, either. During the House Revenue and Taxation committee hearing on the bill, co-sponsor House Speaker Scott Bedke said there will almost certainly be political drama surrounding the legislation.

We won’t have to wait long to see what changes the Senate might make to 311; The transportation will hear that bill in committee this afternoon.


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