Caution urged about proposed income tax increase for schools

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Two of the highest-ranking Utah state lawmakers are urging caution about a proposed income tax increase that would send an estimated $750 million annually to schools because they say it could hurt the state’s economy by scaring away companies.

Senate President Wayne Niederhauser and House Speaker Greg Hughes made their comments Monday at a conference sponsored by the Utah Taxpayers Association, a nonprofit that advocates for limiting taxes.

A group called Education First is advocating for a future a ballot measure raising the income tax by 7/8 of one percent from the current rate of 5 percent.

Group co-chair Richard Kendell says it’s needed because the state has one of the lowest per-pupil spending rates in the county. The group is backed by powerful business executives.

That current income tax rate was established a decade ago.

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