SJR 9: A Supermajority Vote to Raise Taxes
This resolution passed the senate with a vote of 23-6, and it passed the house with a vote of 67-5.
In the past several years, the Utah Legislature has raised many different taxes and fees.
More recently, the Legislature enacted a controversial tax reform package—which included increases in taxes, including the food tax—that provoked a successful citizen referendum signature gathering effort, prompting the bill to be repealed.
Raising taxes is a serious political action with substantial financial ramifications for Utah families, and should therefore not be able to be done by a simple majority vote. Accordingly, Senator Dan McCay is sponsoring Senate Joint Resolution 9—a constitutional amendment that says:
No bill providing for a tax increase may pass without the assent of two-thirds of all members elected to each house, regardless of whether the bill also provides for a decrease in another tax.
In plain English, any bill that proposes to increase a tax rate must receive a supermajority vote of each chamber in the Legislature. 16 other states apply this same standard to some or all tax bills. This bill itself must receive a 2/3 vote in each chamber of the Legislature, then be approved by voters this November via a majority vote.