Big tax bill unveiled in the final hours of the Utah State Legislature

Posted at 7:36 PM, Mar 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-09 05:15:18-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- A massive tax bill has been unveiled in the final hours of the Utah State Legislature.

House Bill 293 was cobbled together on the last day of the 2018 session, a result of backroom negotiations between the House and Senate over the past few weeks.

Some of the big impacts -- it reduces the state income tax and corporate tax rate slightly (from 5% to 4.95%). It also implements a single sales factor, and property tax rates freeze for five years. But if your property values go up, so would the value you pay.

"The money that’s generated from the freezing of this rate, all goes into equalize education funding," Rep. Bradley Last, R-Hurricane, said.

Combined with the voter question that would raise the gas tax by 10 cents a gallon, the net result is $375 million in new tax dollars being spent on schools, teachers and students.

In an interview with FOX 13 on Thursday, House Speaker Greg Hughes, R-Draper, said he approved of it.

"We’ll have new dollars again, good funding of public education this year. It’s always a challenge. You have more children per taxpayer than any other state, you have an enrollment that increases every year. But I’m proud of the new dollars I’m able to commit to public education," he said.

The Senate voted in favor of the bill and in an interview with FOX 13 on Thursday night, Governor Gary Herbert said he would sign it into law.

"This is a grand compromise that I think is win, win, win, win for everybody," he said.

Watch the interview with Governor Herbert on the 2018 legislative session here: