Political opponents come together to support referendum against state’s tax reform package

Dec 23, 2019, 6:11 PM | Updated: 7:08 pm
governor running mate...
FILE: Jeff Burningham, left, and Aimee Winder-Newton, right, adding their names to the referendum petition. Newton, one of the GOP candidates for governor, named her running mate Tuesday. (Colter Peterson, Deseret News)
(Colter Peterson, Deseret News)

UTAH STATE CAPITOL – Some high profile names are joining the effort pushing back on the state’s newly passed tax reform package.  Three different candidates for governor all officially added their names to the list.

Candidate Aimee Winder-Newton says she used to go from city to city, touting the benefits of the reform package.   She says she used to believe the grocery tax credit would come out to far more than what low-income families would pay in additional sales taxes.  However, she was the one being convinced, otherwise.

Winder-Newton says, “I thought they would agree with what legislators were proposing.  I was wrong.”

She says the families explained how an additional $18 per month on food would hurt them, and that figuring out how to fill out another government form would be tedious and overwhelming for them.

Winder-Newton was joined by her political opponents, Jeff Burningham and Zachary Moses, as they signed the referendum proposed by former lawmaker Fred Cox.  Burningham says the state doesn’t have a revenue problem, requiring them to raise sales taxes.  He believes the state has a spending problem.

“Our state government has grown over 30 percent in the past five years.  Has your income grown over 30 percent?  Do you feel 30 percent better served?” he asks.

Other groups like the Utah Tax Reform Coalition, the United Women’s Forum and Utah Legislative Watch were on hand to support the referendum.  Brett Hastings with ULW says the reform package was passed with underhanded tactics, and he claims the task force that was created to hear people’s concerns didn’t do what their group had hoped.

Hastings says, “It was very clear this was not a listening tour, but it was a propaganda campaign funded by taxpayer dollars to try and convince Utahns we had some kind of crisis.”

He also accuses lawmakers of scaring people into believing major changes have to be made to fill the state’s general fund.  He believes lawmakers frequently move money out of that fund, then complain about how little is in it.

“The projections that were presented by the task force are bad projections.  They’re wrong,” Hastings says.

The bill would also add taxes on wholesale gas prices, and analysts predict that would add at least ten cents a gallon.

Today’s Top Stories


Utah Republicans are looking to ban transgender surgeries and other hormone-based care....
Mark Jones

Utah to receive additional $4.9 million from FEMA in response to COVID-19

FEMA has announced Utah will receive an additional $4.9 million to help with the housing costs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
4 days ago
Curt Gresseth

Former U.S. Attorney for Utah talks about what FBI can take off your cellphone

A legal expert joined Dave and Dujanovic to discuss how the FBI can obtain evidence of a crime from a cellphone.
4 days ago
mini-bottles Utah liquor store...
Elizabeth Weiler

“Mini-bottles” could return to Utah state liquor stores

Mini-bottles haven't been on Utah state liquor store shelves for more than two decades. A public hearing will be held on the proposal.
4 days ago
The Biden administration is preparing for the possibility of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, left, and Flor...
MJ Lee, CNN White House correspondent

Biden administration prepares for Abbott and DeSantis to send more migrants to Democratic cities

The Biden administration is readying for more migrants to be sent to Democratic cities.
4 days ago
Gov. Cox mental health...
Mark Jones

Utah National Guard to host 67th annual Governor’s Day

The 67th annual Governor's Day will be held Saturday by the Utah National Guard at Camp Williams.
5 days ago
Samantha Herrera

Semifinalists for the new Utah flag design unveiled

The finalists for the new Utah state flag are on display at the Utah State Capitol, as well as in Logan and Cedar City through Oct. 5.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Political opponents come together to support referendum against state’s tax reform package