On Wednesday, a coalition of left-leaning labor and healthcare groups announced that they have gathered over 980,000 signatures, which would enable them to place Proposition 30 on the November 8 ballot.
Prop 30 was sold as a “temporary” tax extension on California’s top 2 percent by Gov. Jerry Brown four years ago,
The new measure would extend the 2012 personal income tax on the Golden State’s topmost earners through 2030.
Critics allege that the extension would be a prelude to making the tax hike permanent. Advocates disagree: “It simply extends the current tax rates on the wealthiest 2% of Californians,” Laphonza Butler, president of Service Employees International Union California, said according to the Los Angeles Times.
At least 585,000 of the signatures must be found valid in order for the measure to proceed.
According to Capital Political Radio, “the Prop. 30 income tax increases apply to individual Californians who earn more than $250,000 a year; families earning above $500,000 a year; and heads of household earning more than $340,000 a year. Unless those increases are extended, they would expire at the end of 2018.”
If passed, Prop 30 is expected to bring in approximately $11 billion in additional funds annually.
The Times explains that since the majority of the Golden State’s top earners derive their income from the stock market, it is not certain how much money the initiative will reign in. However, the independent Legislative Analyst’s Office projects approximately $7.5 billion for 2019, and likely more beyond that.
The Orange County Register notes that critics of the tax extension are also opposed to it because they believe it will be a drag on California’s economy, which has a reputaiton of being unfriendly to businesses.
A 2012 report by the Manhattan Institute, “The Great California Exodus: A Closer Look,” found that high taxes, burdensome regulations, lack of public sector reforms, and a lackluster job climate have resulted in hundreds of thousands of working Californians leaving the Golden State for Nevada, Arizona, Texas and Oregon.