TABOR repeal is off the table for 2020. Now it’s Initiative 271, a $2 billion tax hike targeting the wealthy | VailDaily.com
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TABOR repeal is off the table for 2020. Now it’s Initiative 271, a $2 billion tax hike targeting the wealthy

John Frank, Colorado Sun
Teachers, students and supporters picket in front of East High School as Denver Public School teachers enter their first day of strikes regarding teacher pay in Feb. 11, 2019. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)

A coalition pushing to overhaul Colorado’s tax system will not pursue a complete repeal of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights this year, opting instead for a ballot measure in November that would generate billions in new money with higher taxes on the wealthy.

The new initiative — which is expected to receive final legal approval Wednesday — is designed to create a more equitable tax system in Colorado by lowering the current 4.63% tax rate for households making less than $250,000 a year. 

An estimated 95% of taxpayers who are below the threshold would qualify for the tax cut, which would tax effect for 2021. For those who make more, the rate is higher with a maximum of 8.9% for annual taxable income over $1 million.

The organizations behind the ballot question, known collectively as Vision 2020 Colorado, expect the new graduated income tax to generate an estimated $2 billion a year in new money with at least half earmarked to increase teacher salaries and retention. The remainder would be spent at the discretion of state lawmakers.

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“We know middle-income Coloradans are paying a greater share of the tax burden than the wealthy 5%, but our tax code isn’t just unfair, it’s inadequate,” said Scott Wasserman, president of the Bell Policy Center, a leading proponent of the measure. The tough decisions made by state lawmakers about how to spend the $30 billion annual budget, he added, are “a purely consequence of our state not having enough money.”

Read more via The Colorado Sun.

The Colorado Sun is a reader-supported news organization dedicated to covering the people, places and policies that matter in Colorado. Read more, sign up for free newsletters and subscribe at coloradosun.com.


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