Governor Vilsack used his “Condition of the State” mesage to outline the “financial bridge” he wants legislators to build for the state, and that bridge includes tax increases. Vilsack’s calling for raising the state cigarette tax by 60 cents per pack, closing loopholes in business taxes, and making more services subject to the state sales tax. Today, most state sales tax revenue comes from the sale of goods and products. Vilsack says that’s 20th Century thinking. He says we now have a service based economy and taxes should be charged on engineering, consulting and other services. Vilsack says by expanding the sales tax to more services, the state can then gradually reduce the over-all sales tax rate. Vilsack said some would pay more under his plan, but he argued most would pay less , over time, and the extra money raised would be used on the state’s schools. “All will benefit as Iowa remains an education leader,” Vilsack said. The Governor began his “Condition of the State” speech by recognizing the Iowans who are serving our country in the military. He specifically mentioned those who were injured or killed in the last year. “The efforts of these unsung heroes should inspire and motivate us to follow their example by making a difference with the opportunities we have been blessed to receive,” Vilsack said..”In the face of such supreme and extraordinary sacrifice, a reciprocal duty and responsibility arised in each of us. We, too, are called to a life of service and sacrifice.”