BOSTON (WWLP) – State legislature has approved the Fair Share Amendment which would add an additional tax on residents making over $1 million a year.
Wednesday’s vote approved the millionaire’s tax, which means it will appear on the November ballot in 2022. The decision is now in the hands of the voters.
During a rare joint session that was held at the State House Wednesday, House and Senate lawmakers both voted on the fair share amendment. The measure passed in a 159 to 41 vote. If voters approve the measure next November, residents making over $1 million a year will have to pay an additional 4 percent tax on every dollar they make above that $1 million threshold.
Representative Lindsay Sabadosa of Northampton told 22News, “That money is then going to go towards transportation and education, things that really need to be more heavily invested in the Commonwealth.”
Now that lawmakers have approved the amendment, supporters and opponents plan to launch public awareness campaigns to help voters decide which way they want to vote.
This isn’t the first time that an additional tax on Massachusetts millionaires has been proposed. The question has appeared on the ballot six different times and it’s even gone to the state’s highest court where the proposal was deemed unconstitutional.
“The fear, of course, is when you tax some people at higher amounts, those people will leave and the politicians will rely on that tax money coming in, without that money coming in so then they’ll go to the next rung below on the ladder,” said Paul Craney of Mass Fiscal Alliance.
Supporters of the plan say the increase could generate more than $2 billion in revenue annually. However, opponents argue that the increase will ultimately cost the state money because business owners will pack up and take their tax dollars with them.
Now that the debate on this issue is over, the attention shifts to the public because it’s voters who will decide the fate of the Fair Share Amendment.