The Clarion-Ledger Editorial, 7/27/8

By his own admission, one of the goals that Gov. Haley Barbour had for his Tax Study Commission was a thorough examination of the state’s tax structure in hopes of being able to deliver a restructuring of the system that might enable some state tax cuts.

In 2003, Barbour ran on a platform of getting state spending under control and has consistently talked about his desire to cut taxes. Now, five years later, Barbour had believed the table was set to proceed with tax cuts.

But in a Mississippi still reeling in some areas from Hurricane Katrina and with nationwide declines in real estate markets and inflation caused by soaring energy costs, Mississippi may well be forced to wait for any tax cuts until the economy improves.

Earlier this month, budget leaders said Mississippi took in $17 million less than expected in the fiscal year that ended June 30. There’s no reason to believe that state revenue collections are going to improve in the first quarter of the new fiscal year, either.