Maryland Republican gubernatorial candidate David Craig on Tuesday presented a $2.55 billion tax-cutting plan that would eventually eliminate the state’s personal income tax.
Craig, who said that Marylanders are fed up with Gov. Martin O’Malley’s (D) record of raising taxes and expanding government’s reach, also promised an across-the-board budget cut of 3 percent if he is elected governor but declined to specify where he would find the savings.
Craig said his plan would slow the outflow of Marylanders who move to Delaware, Pennsylvania and Virginia because of growing frustration with the cost of living and doing business in the state.
“Maryland is no longer economically competitive,” Craig said at a press conference in the Calvert House hotel in Annapolis. “We must restore Maryland to the way it was.”
Craig, who is the Harford County executive, said he would eliminate the personal income tax in phases, and would leave local income taxes in place.
In the first phase, he would cut $600 million in taxes in 2016 by lowering the tax brackets for all earners to 4.25 percent and increasing the personal exemption from $3,200 to $5,000. That would save $352 a year for the average married couple and $176 for individual fliers.
In the second phase, he would reduce the tax rate to a flat 3 percent before eliminating the tax entirely. That would result in savings of $1,500 for married couples and $750 for individuals.
Charles County businessman Charles Lollar, who is also seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination, has also proposed eliminating the personal income tax.