O’Malley’s Remarks About Possible Sales Tax Increase Worry Business Owners

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)– Controversial remarks by the governor on a radio show have some business owners on edge, worried they could see the sales tax go up once again.

Derek Valcourt explains what the governor said and why it’s getting so much attention.

The governor was apparently speaking off the cuff when he suggested a sales tax instead of a gas tax.

At Synchronicity Boutique in Pikesville, planning for prom season is already underway.

“This is the most important season. It’s our Christmas,” Karen Mazer, owner of Synchronicity Boutique, said.

But Mazer is feeling more like the Grinch after hearing the governor in a radio interview say he would prefer a sales tax increase over a gas tax hike.

“Frankly, if I had my druthers, I’d rather do the one penny on the sales tax,” Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley said. “It gives us flexibility.”

“It’s enough to make me cry, and then some,” Mazer said.

Mazer says a sales tax increase could cripple businesses like hers.

“It can make the difference between someone buying one dress over another, or unfortunately, someone shopping at my store or going online and buying this dress,” she said.

But some key lawmakers say retailers like this one don’t need to worry. They say an increase in the sales tax isn’t going to happen.

“The votes aren’t there, so why he throws out a fantasy or pipe dream when the votes aren’t there I’m not sure, but it’s a mistake for him even to mention it,” Senate President Mike Miller said. “But it’s not going to happen. It’s just going to get people needlessly upset.”

At a news conference Thursday morning, O’Malley blamed the media for the reaction to his sales tax comments.

“I haven’t made that proposal but you all love to jump up and down about these things,” he said.

Mazer points out that under O’Malley, the sales tax has already increased from five to six percent. And now she’s hoping it doesn’t jump to seven.

“The idea of even that percentage more is terrifying,” Mazer said.

An increase in the sales tax one penny on the dollar could raise an additional $600 million a year in revenue for the state.

Marylanders will likely be paying more taxes soon, but many expect to feel the pain at the pump. Some in Annapolis are considering a 15 cent hike in the gas tax over three years.

More from Derek Valcourt
  • freedomcoon

    If successful, Md would have the 2nd highest sales tax in the nation. From 6 to 7 % is a 15% increase, not a one cent increase. Do the math. This scoundrel OMalley knows only to tax & spend. Whe he took over it was 5% sales tax.

  • Mike

    Shop online and Delaware. Tax, tax, tax, is all he thinks about. All I can say is that I didn’t vote for him either time. It’s pretty bad when the 42nd smallest state can have the 2nd highest tax. Also don’t forget he wants US to pay for the illegals to go to college on OUR money.

  • hahaha

    takes alot of tax money to pay for boontown

  • jailer1985

    don’t matter what any of us say, sooner or later this state is gonna raise every tax and create new ones. Every increase they talk about is for this damn transportation fund, well if they hadn’t raided it for everything else we would have the money, they raised the mva fee’s,raised mta, raised tolls, raised sales tax, and still have no money?? now gonna raise gas tax and every mva fee again, the bottom line is where is the money going?? if the fund is so broke how come they still building roads? how are they paying for it??

  • KottaMan

    Don’t you just love the censorship on this site?

  • KottaMan

    So, at a news conference Thursday morning, O’Malley blamed the media for the reaction to his sales tax comments. No, blame the taxpayers of this state for getting their hackles up. No new taxes. Cut spending money we do not have. Stop rewarding your union cronies, Guv’nor, by more road work we don’t need. Does BWI Airport REALLY need another 850 million in “improvements” after the taxpayers coughed up a BILLION dollars several years back? Annapolis needs to get real.

  • MD DAD

    “I haven’t made that proposal but you all love to jump up and down about these things,” he said.
    Since all Owe has done since he has been the Governor of Md. is raise taxes, of course just mentioning it is going to cause people in this state to jump up and down.
    Note: I would also have added fees, but according to Owe, fees aren’t taxes.

  • Tony Derrenberger

    Hey Martin…………stop spending!!! That’s what we do at our house when we run low on money

  • pigeon

    Just like Obama, Owe Malley it trying to “sock it to” the people before he loses the right to abuse his “power”.
    Just remember sir, what goes around comes around!

  • good gravy

    I know why he did it, it was very well thought out. It was his way of saying, ” Well, I’m gonna take your money one way or another, if I don’t get it at the pump, I’ll take it from you at the sales counter.”.

    Good looking, charming, talented…..sociopathic. It’s like he was born to be a politician.

  • Bernard Mc Kernan

    If the tax goes to 7% OMalley will have in just less than five years, raised the sales tax in this state by 40%. From 5% to 7% is 40 % & not two cents. OMalley & the gang in Annapolis think that everybody in this stste is a six figure earner except Bloodymore city. Cut spending & B.S. projects. Stop the madness of tax & spend Mr. Governor.

  • Stupidity Rules

    You ain’t seen nothin’ yet…vote them all out….

  • realityck

    Tax O’Malley is at it again. Give him time and he’ll try and tax everything. In the worst economic times since the 1920s, it’s great to see the gov. has his finger on the pulse of Maryland. Advice…get your EZ pass through Delaware, buy online, and tell these clowns to stop spending our money with such reckless fashion

  • josecanuc

    This is the old bait and switch.They’re against me raising the gas tax so I’ll dangle a sales tax increase in front of them , then they’ll be begging me to raise the gas tax instead .I’m a genius .Washington here I come!!!

  • bmoregyrl

    Which is better a penny raise or 15 cents. I am tired of paying out of my a$$ and not being able to afford a vacation. We as a state need a break from any kind of tax increases. The whole US needs to get their stuff together and get our Americans back to work and stop sending everything over seas. I am done paying the government and they don’t have to pay I think they should pay and guess what they would find another way of raising money or cut back on spending.

  • ballsohardclub

    Bmoregyrl, It’s not a penny but from 6% to 7% is 15%. Where the fuc did you go to school?

  • jim



  • joe


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