Most Hawaii residents want lower taxes, new survey shows

The following is a news release issued Oct. 13, 2021, by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii.

A professional poll of almost 1,000 people throughout the islands suggests lawmakers are ignoring what their constituents really want

HONOLULU, Oct. 13, 2021 >> A new survey by one of Hawaii’s top polling companies shows that a substantial majority of Hawaii residents think they are paying too much in taxes and would like to see them lowered.

Conducted in August and September 2021 by Anthology, the survey was commissioned by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii and posed the following statements to 933 residents statewide with the following results:

>> “Lower taxes would help residents better afford the state’s high cost of living”: 79% either “strongly” agreed (40%) or “somewhat” agreed (39%).

>> “Hawaii residents and businesses are overtaxed and should pay lower taxes overall”: 73% either strongly agreed (32%) or “somewhat” agreed (41%).

>> “I personally pay too much state and county taxes”: 70% either “strongly” agreed (29%) or “somewhat” agreed (41%).

>> “States with lower taxes tend to have healthier, more attractive economies”: 68% either “strongly” agreed (23%) or “somewhat” agreed (45%).

And perhaps most telling:

>> “I personally should pay more in state and county taxes”: 81% either “strongly” disagreed (45%) or “somewhat” disagreed (36%).

Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli‘i Akina said the level of agreement that taxes need to be lowered supports what the institute has been recommending for years.

“We’ve always thought that most people in Hawaii want lower taxes,” Akina said. “This new survey by Anthology confirms it. Despite politicians at every level constantly imposing new taxes or trying to increase existing ones, most people in Hawaii would rather see their taxes go down. I can only hope that in light of this new survey, Hawaii lawmakers will recalibrate their policy positions.”

Akina continued: “If state and county lawmakers want to get ahead of the electoral parade — especially in 2022 when every one of our state legislators will be up for reelection — they can start by dropping their plans to raise taxes and work to provide what their constituents really want: lower taxes, a lower cost of living and more opportunities to prosper.”

Akina said lower taxes could also help reverse the exodus of Hawaii residents to the mainland, and perhaps ease Hawaii’s medical doctor shortage, which has been aggravated by the state’s punishing tax regime.

The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii is Hawaii’s foremost independent, nonpartisan research organization devoted to individual liberty, economic freedom and accountable government.

Founded 20 years ago by former U.S. Army colonel and insurance executive Richard “Dick” Rowland, it aims to lower Hawaii’s cost of living, expand opportunities and foster prosperity for all.

Anthology is one of Hawaii’s largest and most respected market research companies, having provided rigorous quantitative and qualitative research services to clients throughout the Pacific for more than 25 years.

Utilizing best practices in sampling design, Anthology Research leveraged a mixed-mode methodology for the survey, which included both phone and online responses. A number of sample sources were used to achieve a representative sample of Hawaii residents, including a high proportion of voters.

The margin of error for the sample size of n=933 is plus or minus 3.21 percentage points with a 95% confidence level.

In order to examine the results by county, a disproportionate sampling plan was developed. By county, 455 of the respondents were from Oahu, 202 from Hawaii Island, 167 from Maui County and 109 from Kauai. The overall data were weighted to reflect population estimates of adults 18 years or older by ethnicity.

Personal questions concerned their ages, education, employment, union membership, income level, ethnicity, political party affiliation, housing status and whether they were registered voters.

For more information about the statistically significant differences between various segments of the sample based on the level of agreement they had with each statement tested, visit the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii website here.

For more information about the survey or to arrange an interview with Keli‘i Akina, please contact Mark Coleman at 808-386-9047 or info@grassrootinstitute.org.

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