State tax task force to meet in Moab July 20

Looking for ways ‘to address the state’s outdated tax structure’

Photo courtesy of the State of Utah

A Utah legislative task force studying ways to modernize and restructure tax revenue will be in Moab July 20 for a town hall meeting. The visit is part of a statewide listening tour that includes stops throughout Utah this summer.

Lawmakers in the 2019 session created the task force “to look for ways to address the state’s outdated tax structure, get public input and suggest solutions,” said Matt Lusty, deputy chief of staff for the Utah House of Representatives, in concert with State Senate Director of Communications Aundrea Peterson.

“Because we’ve always had the foresight to build for tomorrow, our state has always been at the forefront of economic stability,” said Sen. Lyle Hillyard, co­chair of the Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force.

“Let’s work together to take the long view and act now to preserve for future generations a quality of life defined by economic prosperity, incomparable recreation, first-rate education, advanced transportation and clean air,” said Rep. Francis Gibson, task force co­chair.

The town hall meetings will begin with an open house for attendees to learn about the issue, the task force process and have questions answered. Following the open house, the task force will provide a presentation on the challenges the state budget is facing, and the public will have the opportunity to provide input.

Additionally, an informational website will be available with an online form for the public to comment and provide feedback throughout the process.

In Moab, the open house will begin at 1 p.m. and the town hall meeting an hour later on Saturday, July 20 at the Grand Center, 181 North 500 West

Currently, according to the statement from Lusty and Peterson, Utahns enjoy “a high quality of life and the benefits of a strong economy. As a result, the state is experiencing significant growth as businesses and families increasingly recognize Utah as an exceptional place to work, live and play. This growth and the state’s modern economy, however, have outpaced an outdated 1933 revenue structure.

“This imbalance in state revenue sources, combined with restrictions on revenue use, could affect the quality of life for which Utah has long been known, they continued. “If the imbalance is not addressed, it will negatively impact important funding priorities, such as transportation, water, air quality, public safety, recreation and health care.”