Hawaii Tax Rebates Amendment, Question 2 (2010)
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The state constitution at the time of the election required that excess funds be returned to taxpayers, however, the measure called for redirecting those funds to a reserve fund. In 2010 taxpayers received a $1 tax credit in light of a previous surplus despite facing a statewide budget shortfall for 2010.
- See also: 2010 ballot measure election results
|Question 2 (Tax Rebates)|
Official results via Hawaii Office of Elections.
Text of measure
The measure read:
"Shall the legislature be provided with the choice, when the state general fund balance at the close of each of two successive fiscal years exceeds five per cent of the general fund revenues for each of the two fiscal years, to provide a tax refund or tax credit to the taxpayers of the State, or to make a deposit into one or more funds, as provided by law, which shall serve as temporary supplemental sources of funding for the State in times of an emergency, economic downturn, or unforeseen reduction in revenue?"
"DISPOSITION OF EXCESS REVENUES Section 6. Whenever the state general fund balance at the close of each of two successive fiscal years exceeds five percent of general fund revenues for each of the two fiscal years, the legislature in the next regular session shall provide for a tax refund or tax credit to the taxpayers of the State, or make a deposit into one or more funds, as provided by law, which shall serve as temporary supplemental sources of funding for the State in times of an emergency, economic downturn, or unforeseen reduction in revenue, as provided by law."
According to the National Taxpayer’s Union, "The Hawaii Tax Rebates Amendment on the statewide ballot would amend the Constitution to give the Legislature discretion to direct excess tax revenue into a reserve fund. Currently, the State Constitution requires excess funds to be returned to taxpayers. While a reserve fund is a worthwhile protection from economic fluctuations, the state should restructure its budget to finance it from existing revenues rather than threatening tax rebates."
Path to the ballot
In Hawaii, the state legislature is required to approve a proposed amendment by a supermajority vote or 2/3rds but the same amendment could also qualify for the ballot if successive sessions of the Hawaii State Legislature approve it by a simple majority.
- Rainy Day Fund measures get voter backing on Election Day
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- Star-Advertiser,"8 state and city proposals on ballot," October 31, 2010
- Pacific Business News,"Don't forget 'rainy day' ballot question," October 22, 2010
- Star Bulletin,"Rebate amendment on November ballot," April 20, 2010
- Associated Press,"Hawaii voters may decide on tax rebates," April 7, 2010
- "Notice of Proposed Amendments to the Constitution of the State of Hawaii."
- "Thoughts on Hawaii Ballot Measures," Hawaii Reporter, October 27, 2010
- Associated Press,"Hawaii voters asked to forgo tiny tax rebates," April 28, 2010
State of Hawaii
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