Lawmakers reach budget deal with tax-reform incentives

Utah House of Representatives at work during the 2019 Legislative session in the Utah Capitol.

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah lawmakers want to make sure that sweeping tax reform happens soon, and they’re writing the budget to make sure of it.

Legislative leaders said Tuesday that they’re turning $330 million worth of ongoing funding into one-time money, meaning it could go away after a year if tax reform doesn’t come together.

They’re also forming a task force to study ideas, possibly including an increase in the sales tax on food.

Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson says they’re also setting aside $75 million they hope to use to cut taxes.

Lawmakers decided to postpone tax reform after a backlash over a host of proposed new taxes on services ranging from haircuts to legal work.

Leaders say it remains essential to bolster a sales-tax base that’s shrinking as people spend more money on services.

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