Taxes

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Republicans are out with their much-anticipated tax plan. The GOP proposal is the biggest overhaul of the tax system in a generation. While the plan maintains some popular provisions, it changes several others.

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If you’re renting out a room in your house or a camping spot in your backyard, you have to pay taxes on that.


Jesse L. Bonner / AP Images

Tuesday, the Idaho Supreme Court ruled in favor of Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter’s decision to veto a grocery tax repeal passed by the legislature this spring.

To recap: After the legislative session adjourned, the governor vetoed a bill written to get rid of the grocery tax. In response, a group of lawmakers filed suit against that veto – arguing the governor had made his veto decision too late – after the legal timeframe allowed. But now the court has agreed with the governor, and his veto stands.

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The Idaho Supreme Court will hear oral arguments Thursday over a controversial veto by Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter.

The Idaho Legislature passed a repeal of the grocery tax earlier this year, a 6 percent tax that most states do not impose. The measure gained bipartisan support and passed the Senate and House in March.

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Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter allowed a transportation funding bill to become law Tuesday, despite concerns over how the plan came to be.

The $320 million transportation plan takes about $15 million out of the general fund through sales tax – which is used to pay for things like public schools. Governor Otter is not happy with this funding formula, but with bridges and roads falling apart across the state he allowed the bill to become law – without his signature.

Seth Perlman / Associated Press

If you’re e-filing your taxes as next week’s deadline looms, and your return is rejected, you may be the victim of identity theft. The Idaho Tax Commission has already seen cases of fraudulent returns.

Since January, the Idaho Tax Commission has prevented the theft of close to $300,000 in Idaho refunds that were targeted by criminals.

Tawnya Eldredge is the Commission’s identity theft assistance coordinator.

Charlie Litchfield / AP

The Idaho Legislature closed up shop and went home Wednesday. The session went five days longer than leadership had anticipated.

The session was notable for a few bills, including transportation funding and tax cuts, which were sticking points at the end of the session. Lawmakers also didn’t find a solution for the 78,000 Idahoans who fall in the Medicaid gap and don’t have health insurance.

Joy Weese Moll / Flickr

If you’ve filed your state tax return, the Tax Commission says it may need more information before they can send you a refund. That’s due in part to concerns over identity theft and fraud.

The Idaho State Tax Commission says it checks all tax returns for fraud and accuracy. For some, that means getting a letter from the Commission asking you to prove you’re you.

Otto Kitsinger / Associated Press

As we wrap up the 11th week of the 2017 Idaho Legislative Session, lawmakers have been struggling to finish up their work and go home. For several weeks, the goal has been to end the session Friday. House Speaker Scott Bedke said on Thursday lawmakers will have to come back on Monday.

This week lawmakers struggled with a large transportation funding bill. They tried and failed to pass a bill that would have helped some of the 78,000 people in Idaho who can’t afford health insurance. And tax cuts are still a sticking point.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

What began as a tax cut bill in the Idaho House morphed into a repeal of the state's 6 percent grocery tax when the legislation was presented in the Senate Thursday.

Kevin Rank / Flickr

Bills were flying fast and furious in and out of the Idaho House and Senate this week, as lawmakers try to meet next Friday’s deadline to wrap up the session and go home.

As week ten of the legislature comes to a close, lawmakers still haven’t solved the Medicaid Gap in Idaho. Those are the people who can’t afford health care but make too much to qualify for Medicaid. Transportation funding and a tax cut are also still in the mix.

Boise State University political science professor Gary Moncrief says there are still around 100 bills to be considered in the House and Senate.

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Voters in the Wood River Valley may be asked to consider another local option tax to fund airline services and marketing efforts.

Idaho Representative Steve Hartgen / Facebook

The Idaho House Revenue and Taxation Committee voted Tuesday to bring the state's tax code in line with federal rules, despite facing objections from two lawmakers who argued the state should not be recognizing same-sex marriages.

AP Photo

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter says that he has no plans to introduce a tax cut proposal to the Idaho Legislature in 2017.

Speaking Wednesday at the Associated Taxpayers of Idaho annual conference in Boise, Otter said he plans to focus on education as his top priority during the upcoming legislative session. However, Otter added he's open to considering tax cut proposals that make it through the GOP-dominated Legislature.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

In August 2006, then-Gov. Jim Risch promised Idahoans $260 million in property tax relief.

He did deliver a tax cut to property owners.

But he did not deliver Idahoans an overall tax cut, according to an in-depth Idaho Education News analysis.

Instead, in 2015-16, Idahoans paid an additional $21.7 million for K-12 than they would have paid under the old tax structure — mostly because they now pay a higher sales tax. 

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