Maine House votes down bill to stop taxing overtime pay of Maine workers

Rep. Ryan Tipping (D – Orono) pictured on the left, led the opposition to the bill. Rep. Chad Grignon (R – Athens) was the bill’s primary sponsor.

AUGUSTA – The Maine House of Representatives yesterday voted down a bill from Rep. Chad Grignon (R – Athens) that would have ended the state’s practice of levying an income tax on overtime pay. The vote was mostly along party lines, with Democrats voting against the bill and Republicans supporting it.

Rep. Grignon, in his floor speech, said he wanted to make sure Maine’s workers could actually enjoy the benefits of the overtime they work away from their family and friends.

Specifically, Grignon said because Maine’s window for completing construction projects is only seven months and we are competing against New Hampshire, which has no income tax.

“I’ve heard a lot of people talk a lot about fairness. You know, fairness would be to not tax people when they’re away from their families putting a lot of hours in trying to get these projects completed.

Rep. Beth O’Connor, speaking in support of the bill, said, “Any time I see a bill that could lower people’s taxes in one way or another, I think that is a great thing.”

She added, “They know better how to spend that money than myself or anyone in this body.”

Rep. Ryan Tipping, a Democrat who opposed the bill, argued that the change would be hard to implement and that it didn’t apply to some workers, citing those who work out of state or who work for Maine state government.

The bill was voted down 90-55 in the Maine House. It will now go to the Maine Senate for consideration.

Along with Rep. Grignon as the primary sponsor, L.D. 963 has nine cosponsors:

Rep. Sue Austin (R – Gray)
Rep. Richard Cebra (R – Naples)
House Republican Leader Kathleen Dillingham (R – Oxford)
Senator Brad Farrin (R – Somerset)
Rep. Jeff Hanley (R – Pittston)
Rep. Matt Harrington (R – Sanford)
Rep. Tom Martin (R – Greene)
Rep. Lester Ordway (R – Standish)
Rep. Joel Stetkis (R – Canaan)

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