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Weekly Session Update: February 4, 2022

Tax Reform

This week, the Senate Finance committee unveiled a plan to significantly reform Mississippi’s income, grocery, and vehicle license taxes. After working on this issue for more than a year – from holding hearings to conducting studies – I’m proud of the plan we have produced. Some highlights in the plan include an elimination of the 4 percent income tax bracket, a reduction in the grocery tax from 7 percent to 5 percent, an elimination of the state’s fees on car tags, and a one-time cash payment to people with a tax liability. As a strong conservative and Vice Chair of the Senate Finance committee, I will always work to return dollars back to hard-working Mississippians.

Deadlines

The Legislation faced another deadline this week. Tuesday, February 1 marked the last day for bills to pass out of a committee in the chamber in which they originated. Put more simply, all Senate general bills this week either passed out of the committee in which they were assigned – or they died. Now, the Senate has until next Friday, February 11, to either pass or kill all general bills that have been passed out of committee.

ABC Privatization

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about a piece of legislation I have been working on to allow Mississippi’s Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) to contract with a third party for warehouse and distribution operations. My colleagues in the House have drafted a bill that would remove the state completely from the business of alcohol distribution and warehouse operations. While I have disagreements with the specifics of their legislation, I commend their efforts to increase efficiency in alcohol distributions in the state and utilize the private sector to reduce waste. I look forward to working with House leadership to craft the best possible legislation for Mississippians.

Let me know

Do you have an opinion or question about the Senate tax reform plan? How do you think Mississippi should handle alcohol distribution and warehousing going forward? Let me know at chjohnson@senate.ms.gov!

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