Expert witnesses at the fifth meeting of the President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform here, advised the reform group to proceed with extreme caution with regard to the adoption of a national sales tax and changes to the Earned Income Tax Credit. Robert Greenstein, founder and executive director of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told the panel that a consumption tax could be implemented but would carry with it a string of collateral problems such as calls for exemptions and exclusions. Louisiana treasurer John Kennedy said that a sales tax was "not as simple as it might first appear." He added that a sales-and-use tax provides 37 percent of the state's revenue, but advised the panel to examine any and all issues Louisiana had with the state-wide levy. When addressing the merits of the EITC Kennedy also told the panel that it had "done more than any other program to lift people out of poverty." Greenstein pointed out that the EITC increases work efforts while slashing welfare among single parents. Next week the Tax Reform panel will host its sixth meeting, scheduled for March 31, at Fort Mason Center, Landmark Building A, San Francisco. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.

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