Sales Tax:
St. Johnsbury and the rest of the Connecticut River Valley towns and counties have been economically punished by Vermont sales tax since 1969. Scott has proposed that the sales tax be repealed and replaced with natural growth in revenue from a sales tax free Vermont, new revenue streams that do not impact Vermonters, and slowing the growth of State spending.

Fiscal Policy:
For this first time, the Vermont Legislature did not raise a single tax or fee in the 2017-2018 biennium. Gov. Phil Scott and a scrappy group of legislators that fully understand how the affordability crisis is impacting Vermont pocketbooks and economic growth deserve a tremendous amount of credit. We can continue this trend and even reduce tax rates by continuing to discover and eliminate inefficiencies in Montpelier.

Education Finance:
St. Johnsbury continues to receive an inequitable education tax rate. Act 60 mandated that district homestead tax rates be determined by how much a district spent per equalized pupil. This is inherently unfair because a district’s spending is only partially supported (27%) by homestead taxes. The net effect is that low spending districts pay a rate premium to support rate discounts given to high spending districts. A $1.00 homestead tax rate supports a pupil spending level of $13,200. Presently, a district spending $13,200 receives a tax rate of $1.31. The difference, $0.31 allows for higher spending districts to receive a discounted rate.

Local Control:
Vermont municipalities deserve to be able to run themselves with minimal interference from Montpelier. School Choice and Independent Schools should be protected and expanded if districts choose to tuition their children.

Carbon Tax/Environment:
Scott does not support a Vermont Carbon Tax or the ESSEX plan. We need to continue to make progress on efficiency, sharing, and alternative energy. Vermont is the Greenest State in the nation WITHOUT a Carbon Tax. It is our duty as Vermonters to keep our environment clean. We also must be mindful that we do not live in a vacuum, and unnecessary regulation and taxation will make our energy use inefficient, overly expensive, and ultimately do damage to our economy and families.

Health Care:
I support efforts by One Care Vermont to shift health care to a model where healthcare professionals are paid to keep people healthy and not for how many procedures and/or tests they order. One Care Vermont, increased market competition including the ability to purchase health insurance across state lines, and well-crafted regulation are Vermont’s best chance to control unsustainable health care increases.
Scott Beck 93 Overlook Drive, St. Johnsbury, Vermont 05819 Scott Beck © 2018 All Rights Reserved.