(The Center Square) – Gov. Greg Gianforte has released his 2023 biennium budget proposal, which he calls a “Roadmap to the Montana Comeback.”
“This roadmap to the Montana comeback will help unlock our state’s full, outstanding potential,” Gianforte said in a statement.
Gianforte’s budget proposal would provide $50 million in tax relief, he said, including cutting the top marginal income tax rate to 6.75% from 6.9%, paid by earners who make taxable income of more than $18,400.
It also would raise the business equipment tax exemption from $100,000 to $200,000, affecting about 4,000 small businesses.
Gianforte’s budget boosts funding by 25 percent for programs providing property tax relief to low-income homeowners, including disabled veterans and seniors.
Marijuana tax revenue and part of the state's tobacco tax settlement would be diverted to the Healing and Ending Addiction through Recovery and Treatment Fund to help combat the drug epidemic, he said.
Gianforte said his budget also provides $2.5 million in incentives to raise the pay of starting teachers. Montana ranks last in the country in starting teacher pay.
“I promised we would hold the line on new general fund spending," he said. "This budget does. After a decade of out-of-control spending, this budget brings fiscal responsibility back to state government while providing essential services.”