A new analysis by an independent think tank confirms what the IAFF has been saying for months:  the tax plan advocated by GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney would increase taxes on fire fighters and other middle-income Americans.

The study by the Tax Policy Center, a non-partisan research organization founded by the highly-respected Brookings Institution and Urban Institute, found that Romney’s proposal would slash taxes for the wealthiest 5% of Americans but raise taxes for everyone else.

Even when the researchers used Republican economic models that suggest tax cuts will spur economic growth, the result was the same.   Millionaires would get an average tax cut of $87,000, while 95% of the population would see their taxes go up by an average of $500 per year.

Romney’s plan proposes lowering tax rates while eliminating tax deductions and exclusions.  In order to generate sufficient revenue to meet Romney’s revenue target, mortgage interest and employer-provided health benefits would lose their tax exempt status.   Since these tax breaks largely benefit the middle-class, Romney’s plan amounts to increasing taxes on middle-class Americans in order to give huge tax breaks to the super-wealthy.

For fire fighters, taxing health benefits would be especially burdensome because first responders tend to have more expensive health plans.   A fire fighter with a health benefit package costing $20,000 could see their taxes go up by $5,000 a year.