Legislature Advances Fair Share Act
During a constitutional convention this week, Representative Joan Meschino and her colleagues in the Massachusetts Legislature voted to move forward an amendment to the Massachusetts Constitution to generate revenues for transportation and educational investments, by placing an additional 4 percent tax on annual taxable income in excess of $1 million.
The revenue generated – estimated by the Department of Revenue at as much as $2.2 billion annually – would fund repair and maintenance projects for roads, bridges or public transportation as well as funding for public education.
“Investments of this scale in transportation infrastructure and education would deeply benefit the communities of the 3rd Plymouth District,”said Representative Meschino. “This initiative began as a ballot measure, making it worthwhile to take this step to give voters an opportunity to make a decision on this issue.”
The income level would be adjusted annually to reflect any increases in the cost of living by the same method used for federal income tax brackets. This would ensure that, over time, the additional 4 percent tax would continue to apply only to the highest earning individuals in the Commonwealth. The tax would apply to all tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2023.
The full legislature must approve constitutional amendments in two consecutive legislative sessions, before the question appears on the ballot for voter approval. The vote that took place during this week’s constitutional convention was the first of the two needed votes. The next vote must be taken during the 2020-2021 legislative session. If approved during that second session, the amendment would presented to voters for consideration on the ballot in 2022.