Governor Heineman says he’ll again ask state legislators to do away with the state inheritance tax, a tax that’s now part of the funding for county governments.
State Senator Tyson Larson, of O’Neill, says some counties “out east” don’t appear to need the money the tax is generating.
“Lancaster and Douglas counties that have Lincoln and Omaha continue to have wasteful programs and do things that the counties shouldn’t necessarily be doing,” Larson says. “The counties in my district are very tight. We had the floods last year. They’re using (the money) to re-build bridges. They’re not spending it on frivolous things.”
Larson says he may be able to support a multi-year, gradual elimination of the tax.
“I’d be more open to us phasing it out to let the counties possibly move forward and prepare for that,” he says. “To take it all away at once, I’m not sure I’m there.”
Larson says he’s concerned that cutting the inheritance tax could lead to more upward pressure on property taxes.
Governor Heieman made his comments about the tax after Douglas County leaders agreed to help fund a new multi-million-dollar cancer research center in Omaha.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton