Hawaii demonstrators push for tax hike
By MARK NIESSE
HONOLULU — Labor unions and advocates for the needy are storming the Hawaii Capitol in hopes that lawmakers will raise taxes, while anti-tax protesters nearby urged the government to back off.
More than 200 people visited the offices of state legislators Tuesday in hopes they would approve a one percentage increase in Hawaii’s 4 percent general excise tax, the state’s version of the sales tax imposed on goods and services.
They waved multicolored “GET” signs and begged lawmakers not to cut jobs and services.
Two Senate committees have approved the tax hike, but the Senate’s financial planners intend to kill the proposal. Even if it did pass, there aren’t enough votes to override a likely veto.
A group of about 20 tea party protesters waved signs opposing tax increases