Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
News Opinion Readers Respond

Estate taxes and the minimum wage [Letter]

Your recent editorial on Maryland's estate tax linked the discussion about increasing the minimum wage to the issue of estate and inheritance taxes ("Settling the estate tax," Jan. 16).

I support both an increase in the minimum wage and a decrease in the estate tax for the same underlying reasons. I believe in the value of people being self-sustaining and not being overly dependent on the government, although obviously this is not possible for all.

An increase in the minimum wage will reduce the number of people dependent on government support. People who save and accumulate assets to provide for themselves are not looking to the government to pay for their care toward the end of life, which in many instances is substantial.

Passing assets to children and grandchildren is a means of helping members of your family become self-sufficient. As government and businesses reduce pensions and the future of Social Security is clouded, people will need to have substantial savings to maintain a middle-class standard of living in their retirement years.

Given low interest rates, there is a very modest return on savings in our current times. I believe in basic fairness. An increase in the minimum wage is justified in order to take into account the impact of inflation on working people.

How many decades has the level for imposing a tax upon estates been set at $1 millions? Basic fairness requires an adjustment of this figure.

Finally, raising the amount would keep more relatively successful Marylanders living in the state so they can give and receive the support of their family and maintain ties to their communities, including support of local charities and organizations.

Any earnings accrued from their savings are taxed and contribute to the general welfare. This is lost to the state when a people of means leave Maryland. A senior citizen should not be asked to choose between residing near their roots and having to pay an onerous tax which is imposed on only a small percentage of the state's population.

Supporting the government is a responsibility shared by all; imposing a tax of tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars on a limited few who do not shelter their assets from taxation is not consistent with the value of basic fairness and, sadly, your editorial does not address any of these issues.

Walter Dent, Kingsville

-
To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Good ideas for cutting spending
    Good ideas for cutting spending

    I liked Sen. Jim Rosapepe's commentary regarding the state budget and ways to reduce spending ("Three big ways Gov. Hogan can save tax money," Dec. 16). I hope Larry Hogan takes it to heart!

  • Maryland's unfriendly business climate kills another 1,000 jobs
    Maryland's unfriendly business climate kills another 1,000 jobs

    Maryland is incredibly unfriendly to business with its heavy burden of regulations, high taxes and an out-of-control minority business enterprise extortion process that enriches a few African-Americans without hiring the inner city minorities it is designed to assist ("The Bechtel blame...

  • Missing expectations
    Missing expectations

    Leading Maryland Democrats made several observations about Monday's write-down of anticipated tax revenues for this fiscal year and next that merit some parsing. Comptroller Peter Franchot opined that "we're experiencing the downside risk of an economic model that's predicated on federal...

  • Hogan's fiscal rhetoric meets reality
    Hogan's fiscal rhetoric meets reality

    When Gov.-elect Larry Hogan proclaimed the need for "strong medicine" to cure Maryland's fiscal state, he drew some jeers from the Democrats in Annapolis. The O'Malley administration bristled at the notion that he was bad-mouthing the incumbent governor's fiscal management. Sen. Richard...

  • Senator displays his own arrogance
    Senator displays his own arrogance

    State Sen. Paul Pinsky writes an appropriately-named commentary condemning corporate lobbyists and maintaining that he and his fellow Democrats will fight against this "corporate victory" in the past election ("Post-election arrogance?" Nov. 14). That's funny. I was under the apparently...

  • Hogan's fiscal realities
    Hogan's fiscal realities

    When Republican Larry Hogan was elected governor this month, his platform was narrow and clear: Roll back as many of the tax increases of the last eight years as possible. When he made that promise, he knew he faced a $405 million shortfall in this year's budget and next year's as soon as he...

Comments
Loading