To Europe's Thrifty, Austerity Is Just Unfair
South Tyrol in the Italian Alps, like many regions in Europe, is being asked by the central government to absorb big tax increases and spending cuts. Some local leaders instead propose buying their fiscal independence from Rome. “We are willing to contribute, ” says Thomas Widmann, economics minister for Italy’s wealthiest province. He suggests that South Tyrol pay €15 billion ($19.9 billion), its share of Italy’s €1.9 trillion debt based on the province’s population, in exchange for total control over local taxing and spending.
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