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  • Bill would extend hotel, dining taxes

    OLYMPIA – Senators heard testimony Wednesday on a bill that would extend temporary taxes on hotel stays, restaurants and car rentals to help fund an expansion of the Washington State …


  • Idaho Democrats make stand on cigarette tax hearing

    BOISE – The Idaho House’s minority Democrats declared a procedural guerrilla war on Tuesday, vowing stall tactics to delay the 2011 session’s end to protest the Republican majority’s refusal to …


  • State tax amnesty window closes soon

    The Washington Department of Revenue’s first-ever tax amnesty program means qualifying businesses with overdue taxes can apply to pay them without associated penalties and interest. “Hardworking business owners have faced …


  • $1 billion in refunds awaits 2007 tax non-filers

    Refunds totaling more than $1.1 billion may be waiting for nearly 1.1 million people who did not file a federal income tax return for 2007, the Internal Revenue Service says. …


  • Smart Bombs: Here’s a teachable moment

    We’ve heard plenty about how public employees are to blame for budget deficits around the nation. It’s as if the Great Recession never happened, and instead public employee unions suddenly …


  • Washington ranks 29th in national tax report

    State and local taxes in 2009 claimed 9.3 percent of Washington incomes, and 9.4 percent in Idaho, according to figures released Wednesday by the Tax Foundation. The nonpartisan foundation’s calculation …


  • Tax burdens nearly same in Washington, Idaho

    State and local taxes in 2009 took 9.3 percent of resident incomes in Washington, and 9.4 percent in Idaho, according to figures released today by the Tax Foundation.


  • City-owned warehouse seen as ideal for regional animal shelter

    A regional task force believes it has found the perfect site for a new animal-control shelter if not a way to pay for it. Numerous questions remain unanswered, but Spokane …


  • Editorial: Federal debt won’t shrink by passing the buck

    The household analogy seems to hit home when talking about government budgets, so imagine this scenario: In seven years, the interest payment on your credit cards will exceed your monthly …


  • Coordinator discusses AARP’s free tax preparation program

    Tax season begins in earnest Tuesday, and AARP will again offer free tax preparation at numerous Tax-Aide centers in the Inland Northwest. John Viveiros is the Spokane district coordinator for …


  • Local lawmakers’ reactions to State of the Union vary

    While they liked some overall themes in President Barack Obama’s call for more innovation, more cooperation and less spending, some members of Congress from Idaho and Washington wondered about the …


  • NW delegation finds reasons to cheer, jeer in Obama speech

    While they liked some overall themes in President Obama’s call for more innovation, more cooperation and less spending, some members of Congress from Idaho and Washington wondered about the details. …


  • As funding wanes, school districts look to levies

    Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene school districts, like most in the nation, have made tough cuts in the past two years because of a declining economy. Education officials expect the …


  • D.C. holiday means extra weekend to file taxes

    Looks like we can thank the District of Columbia for this one. The Internal Revenue Service today announced the deadline to file and pay federal 2010 taxes has been pushed …


  • Hart averts another tax fight

    BOISE – Tax-protesting Idaho state Rep. Phil Hart narrowly avoided a court order over the holidays when he belatedly filed his 2009 state income tax return three days before Christmas. …


  • As gasoline use drops, so does state revenue

    The trend toward lower gasoline consumption is like a flashing yellow light in the new 20-year plan from the Washington Transportation Commission. To improve or even maintain mobility in the …


  • Vestal: In Washington, a penny could go a long way

    Now can we soak the rich? How about just dampening the hems of their gowns?


  • Vestal: Hart ethics panel holdout Loertscher has a point

    Tom Loertscher is the one guy on the Idaho House Ethics Committee who wants to leave Phil Hart alone. How about Hart’s unpaid half-million in taxes and lame, I’m-a-legislator excuses? …


  • Caldwell: Deficit discussions are truly farcical

    Here’s one bottom line on all the foolishness about perpetuating the worst-conceived tax cuts in U.S. history: the transfer of $500 billion more in American wealth to the Chinese. Not …


  • Budget preserves East Side Library

    Spokane’s endangered East Side Library will remain open at least another year. The Spokane Public Library branch had been on the chopping block to deal with budget cuts.


  • East Side branch will remain open

    Spokane’s endangered East Side library will remain open at least another year. The Spokane Public Library branch had been on the chopping block to deal with budget cuts. But the …


  • Poll: Idahoans favor sin tax hike

    BOISE – Idahoans overwhelmingly support raising state taxes on cigarettes and alcohol to address the state’s budget deficit, even as they oppose other tax hikes and spending cuts, according to …


  • Teachers union says secret deals erode schools

    BOISE – Three education groups are seeking to join Rep. Shirley Ringo, D-Moscow, in her lawsuit over secret tax deals by the state Tax Commission, saying the alleged deals are …


  • Exports, credit, taxes among initiatives to boost businesses

    Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire Tuesday ordered state agencies to develop programs and institute reforms that will boost small businesses faltering in the economic slowdown. The initiatives range from help with …


  • Square off: Extending tax rates will boost economy

    WASHINGTON – It has been said a lie can make it half way around the world before the truth can even put its boots on. No one is suggesting that …


  • Square off: Extend cuts for 98 percent who need them

    WASHINGTON — George W. Bush summed it up at an $800 a plate dinner back in 2000 with a joke: “This is an impressive crowd — the haves and the …


  • Initiative support tepid in poll

    Washington voters may be experiencing initiative overload this year with a near-record number of ballot measures. They can stage a “tax revolt” by lifting new taxes imposed by the Legislature …


  • Poll: Weak support for Washington initiatives

    Three initiatives that would change the state’s tax policies – instituting an income tax, dropping a series of consumer taxes or requiring supermajorities to pass new taxes – have more …


  • Liberty Lake City Council gets advice on budget crisis

    The Liberty Lake City Council continued to hear ideas to help solve an impending budget crisis expected to hit the city sometime next year, including closing the library. During the …


  • City, Valley might back vehicle tax, Mielke says

    Spokane County Commissioner Todd Mielke said Tuesday that Spokane and Spokane Valley city officials have indicated they may seek a countywide vehicle tax. A countywide “transportation benefit district” requires the …

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