LITTLE ROCK (KATV) — Legislators are looking to pass a bill that would cut taxes for individuals and corporations starting next year.
According to the legislative impact statement for the bill, those who earn between $24,300 and $87,000 would get an individual income tax reduction from 4.7% to 4.4% starting in 2024.
Representative Charlene Fite, (R) District 24, said the bill will benefit residents of the state.
"It's always a good thing when we can leave more money in the citizen's pockets," Fite said. "We have as you know a large surplus in the state of Arkansas so it's only right that we return some of that to the people who have paid it in."
Fite said the bill's corporate tax reduction from 5.1% to 4.8% could positively impact the state.
"It makes us more friendly to attract more good businesses to come into our state," Fite said.
Senate Bill 8 also provides a one-time $150 nonrefundable income tax credit for individuals with a net income up to $89,600.
Rebecca Zimmermann, community engagement director for Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, said her organization is concerned for the state's budget if the bill passes.
"Even though there's a so-called surplus, there are many programs for children, and families that have been underfunded or not funded at all Zimmermann said.
Zimmermann noted Arkansas Better Chance, a state early childhood program, hasn't seen a significant increase in over a decade.
Zimmermann went on to list other underfunded programs including the Positive Youth Development Act, which aims to expand availability of afterschool programs to youth for working families and the Arkansas Housing Trust Fund which aims to provide stable homes for those who need them.
Zimmer said their national partners at the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy determined SB8 would cost the state of Arkansas 222 million every year, with 70% of the benefits going to the highest income earners in the state.
"They also did an analysis of all the tax cuts that have been done since 2014," Zimmermann said. "The cuts that we've already made have cost the state nearly $1.6 billion dollars every year."