The Savannah Chamber of Commerce released its list of legislative priorities on Thursday, topped by a request to eliminate the state income tax on the retirement pay of veterans. According to a story in the Savannah Morning News, the exemption would be revenue neutral, paid for by raising the tax on each pack of cigarettes by 28 cents.
House District 166 Rep. Jesse Petrea plans to introduce the bill for the 2016 legislative session.
Petrea called the bill, which will eliminate all state taxes on veterans’ retirement benefits, “the right thing to do.”
“This bill is good for veteran families and good for Georgia businesses and industry,” he said. “We’re all familiar with the issues our businesses face in finding a skilled workforce.
“What better way to alleviate that problem than to incentivize patriotic, disciplined and skilled individuals to stay in Georgia?”
Petrea pointed out that veterans already have that perk in Florida, Alabama and Tennessee.
Other Savannah Chamber priorities for the upcoming session include increasing the amount of funds available for marketing tourism in the Peach State, and providing funding for new facilities at Armstrong University and Savannah State College. The 2016 legislative session will be gaveled in on January 11th, 2016.