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Representative Denise C. Garlick, Senator Mike Rush, and Senator Becca Rausch voted to advance Fair Share Amendment.

In an effort to generate new revenue for public education and transportation, the Needham’s state delegation of Representative Denise C. Garlick, Senator Mike Rush, and Senator Becca Rausch voted to advance a constitutional amendment that seeks to place an additional 4 percent tax on annual taxable income over $1 million.

The proposed Fair Share Amendment (S.16 / H.86) would raise taxes from 5.05% to 9.05% only on the portion of annual income exceeding $1 million, generating an estimated $2.2 billion annually, according to the Department of Revenue. The funds would be designated to maintaining and developing Massachusetts roads, bridges, and infrastructure, as well as strengthening public schools and making public higher education more affordable.

The tax would apply to all tax years beginning on January 1, 2023, and thereafter, the $1 million income level would be adjusted annually to account for any increases in the cost of living, in order to ensure that the tax only pertains to the high-earning members of the Commonwealth with the sufficient means.

The amendment would mitigate inadequacies and inequities in funding for education and transportation by providing support across the Commonwealth.

“I am committed to quality, inclusive schools, affordable and accessible public higher education, and a safe, reliable transportation system,” said Representative Garlick, who serves as the Vice Chair of the House and Joint Committees on Ways and Means, “These are shared values which demand equitable funding across the state. The Fair Share Amendment is a progressive tax that will enable the Commonwealth to make these crucial investments.Subscribe

“I am proud to have voted in favor of advancing the Fair Share Amendment,” said Senator Rush. “The Fair Share Amendment is moving us closer to being able to make critical investments in the Commonwealth’s transportation and education systems.”

“The Legislature’s budget deliberations yielded meaningful investments in our communities, and yet we still do not have enough money to fully fund all of the critically needed services to support and improve people’s lives across the Commonwealth,” said Senator Rausch. “Revenue reform, including the Fair Share Amendment, is a crucial step we must take to robustly address the rising costs of education, transportation, substance use treatment, healthcare, and more.”

Needham Public Schools consistently rank among the best in Massachusetts. The vote comes after the Needham state legislative delegation approved a transportation funding bill that will bring nearly $1 million to the town of Needham for road, rail, and infrastructure improvements.

The constitutional convention, which passed the Fair Share Amendment with 148-47 support, was the first part of a two-step process to bring the amendment to the voters of the Commonwealth. The amendment must receive a majority support in the next (2021/2022) legislative session before it would ultimately be placed on November 2022 ballot.

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