We want a Colorado with great job opportunities.
Everyone knows someone who is out of work and struggling. When you total up job seekers, people who can only find part-time work, and Americans who have given up, the unemployment rate exceeds 15 percent! While Colorado’s unemployment rate is a little lower than the rest of the nation’s, nearly one in twelve Colorado residents who wants to work can’t find a job. That adds up to a lot of hardship for Colorado families.
While the government cannot effectively create private sector jobs, it can create an environment where business large and small flourish. Or government can, just as easily, create a climate where economic activity declines.
When the government raises taxes or overregulates (or merely threatens to do these things), businesses do not hire new employees or bring new services and products to market. They may even have to let good employees go to meet these higher costs. Worse comes to worst, they pack up and leave the state or even the country to find a more hospitable place to do business. Conversely, when the government reduces taxes and regulations to commonsense levels, businesses expand and create jobs.
Believe it or not, America has the highest corporate tax rate in the world. When you combine business and individual taxes, Americans pay over 33 percent of their income to taxes according to the Tax Foundation. The Tax Foundation calculates how many months Americans must work to pay off their federal, state, and local taxes. For Coloradoans, the day that they finishing paying off their taxes—Tax Freedom Day—is April 15. Some of our state neighbors like New Mexico, Arizona, Nebraska, and Oklahoma have comparatively lower tax burdens. The Tax Foundation's State Business Tax Climate Index, which accounts for corporate taxes, unemployment insurance taxes, individual income taxes, sales taxes, and taxes on residential and commercial property property, ranks Colorado 16th in the nation.
Americans carry an even heavier burden when you add the cost of regulations to that of taxes. Federal regulations alone cost $1.1 trillion according to Economist W. Mark Crain. This is more than what businesses or individuals pay in taxes. The federal government’s departments, agencies, and commissions issue well over 81,000 pages of regulations every year. In addition to federal laws and regulations, Colorado residents must abide by another 30,000 criminal and regulatory laws.
Imagine what would happen if a fraction of these regulations were removed? Imagine what would happen if the government lowered taxes on businesses? Most economists agree that these steps would energize the economy and create jobs. Unlike the failed, government- spending “stimulus” programs of the past two administrations, real reform would have a lasting positive effect of job creation.
Did you know that half of all Americans do not pay federal incomes taxes? The bottom 60 percent of Americans receive more in government benefits than they pay in taxes. The top 10% of earners pay 70 percent of all income taxes.
Did you know that Americans pay more than just income and sales taxes? All told, Americans pay income tax, Medicare tax, Social Security tax, unemployment tax, alternative minimum tax, dividend tax, license fees, corporate income tax, sales tax, corporate franchise tax, hazardous waste tax, insurance tax, property tax, death tax, interest tax, driver’s license fee, motor vehicle excise tax, plate fees, rental car tax, gas tax, toll fee, tire disposal fee, property tax, phone service tax, cable television tax, water utility tax, sewer utility tax, gas utility tax, trash collection tax, real estate transfer, mortgage recording tax, wireless communication service surcharge, dry cleaning tax, sales tax, pet license fee, federal manufacture’s excise tax, fur clothing tax, air transportation tax, boat tax, cigarette tax, alcohol tax, sports bookmaking tax, and gambling tax. Wow! That’s a lot of ways the government takes money from all of us!