Mitch Coffman: During the 2012 legislative session, House Joint Resolution 1 was introduced, proposing an amendment to the Idaho Constitution requiring that any tax increase or fee increase would need a two-thirds vote of both houses in the Legislature for a tax or fee increase. It received mixed reviews when it was presented in committee, and ultimately didn’t go anywhere.
The resolution said that no bill providing for a net increase in revenue to the state, by fees or taxes, can become law unless two-thirds of both houses approve it.
The resolution was defeated on two grounds of reasoning. First, that it did not provide a clear definition of what constitutes a net increase in revenue and, second, a number of lawmakers were not willing to consider a tax increase and a fee increase in the same resolution. That is, many more favored such a limit on tax increases, but were hesitant when it came to fee increases.