Comptroller Franchot Says Middle Class is Key to State's Success

Comptroller Franchot Says Middle Class is Key to State's Success

Franchot told members of the chamber of commerce he thinks lawmakers in Annapolis shouldn't overtax Marylanders. He says the state should have a more predictable tax rate for the next three to four years so more middle-class families can come and spend their money throughout the state and in Western Maryland.
FREDERICK, Md. - Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot met with the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce Tuesday afternoon to hear their concerns and talk about the economic conditions in the state.

Cash is changing hands in downtown Frederick, but the comptroller wants to make sure everyone can help stimulate the economy.

"The taxpayers in the State of Maryland are really suffering right now," Franchot (D) said. "Many of them are hanging on by their fingernails."

Those with the chamber of commerce brought up some issues to the comptroller.

"The issues would always be the taxes, how well we're doing there, how competitive we are as a state with other states. That's always a huge concern for the business community when we border our other states so closely," said Richard "Ric" Adams, president and CEO of the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce.

Franchot told members of the chamber of commerce he thinks lawmakers in Annapolis shouldn't overtax Marylanders. He says the state should have a more predictable tax rate for the next three to four years so more middle-class families can come and spend their money throughout the state and in Western Maryland.

"Data shows that the middle class is lacking employment and lacking wage growth, and because of that, they have a lot less money to spend on the economy and therefore, the sales tax revenue is way down," Franchot said.

Franchot says the business atmosphere needs to change in the State House to make sure social issues, such as education, are funded so the middle class can grow.

"What we're going now is taking from the middle class with the gas tax increase, sales tax increase, gambling tax increase," Franchot said. "You see everybody going and rushing to these casinos. That's money that should be going to the Dancing Bear toy store. That should be going to the local jeweler."

Local businesses hope people keep on spending and keeping money in the economy so local mom-and-pop shops can continue to do business in the state.

In 2012, the Maryland General Assembly approved increasing taxes for people who make more than $100,000 a year and couples who make more than $150,000 a year.
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