Republicans outline tax plan ahead of General Assembly session

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Virginia Republicans are outlining a tax plan they say avoids a “hidden” tax hike and is a better deal for lower and middle class taxpayers than Gov. Ralph Northam’s recent proposal. House Republican leaders released details of their plan Friday, ahead of the start of the legislative session. The GOP plan would allow taxpayers to itemize their state taxes even if they take the federal standard deduction while also increasing the amount of the state’s standard deduction. Republicans say their plan would allow Virginians to benefit more from the 2017 federal tax overhaul, which would provide the state a multi-billion dollar windfall if the state tax rates and deductions went unchanged. Northam, a Democrat, wants use the extra money to increase spending in certain areas and pad the state’s reserves.

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