Court blocks 'millionaire tax' question from state ballot

Latest News

Massachusetts' highest court on Monday struck down a proposed "millionaire tax" ballot question, blocking it from going before state voters in November and ending advocates' hopes for generating some $2 billion in additional revenue for education and transportation.

The Supreme Judicial Court, in a 5-2 ruling, said the initiative petition should not have been certified by Democratic Attorney General Maura Healey because it violated the "relatedness" clause of the state constitution that prohibits ballot questions from mingling unrelated subjects — in this case, taxing and spending.

The proposed constitutional amendment — referred to by its proponents as the "Fair Share Amendment," would have imposed a surtax of 4 percent on any portion of an individual's annual income that exceeds $1 million. The measure called for revenues from the tax to be earmarked for transportation and education.

Writing for the majority, Associate Justice Frank Gaziano said a voter who supported the surtax but opposed earmarking the funds for a specific purpose would be left "in the untenable position of choosing which issue to support and which must be disregarded."

The justices offered hypothetical examples of voters who might support spending on one priority but not the other, such as a subway commuter with no school-age children.

The measure had been poised to reach voters in November after receiving sufficient support from the Legislature in successive two-year sessions. But several business groups, including the Massachusetts High Technology Council and Associated Industries of Massachusetts, sued to block it.

The court's ruling was a devastating blow for Raise Up Massachusetts, a coalition of labor unions, community and religious organizations that collected more than 150,000 signatures in support of the millionaire tax.

Related listings

  •  Netanyahu heads to court as 1st sitting Israeli PM on trial

    Netanyahu heads to court as 1st sitting Israeli PM on trial

    Latest News 05/21/2020

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is lashing out at Israel’s justice system, saying his trial on corruption charges is an attempt to “depose” him. Prime Minister Benjamin spoke Sunday as he arrived at a Jerusalem courthouse ...

  • Louisiana Senate targets lawyer ads promising big payouts

    Louisiana Senate targets lawyer ads promising big payouts

    Latest News 05/15/2020

    A proposal striking at the proliferation of TV, radio and billboard ads blanketing Louisiana is headed to the state House for debate after winning support from senators Thursday.Sen. Heather Cloud’s bill would declare as false or misleading tho...

  • Arkansas candidate's political ties targeted in court race

    Arkansas candidate's political ties targeted in court race

    Latest News 02/22/2020

    The race for a seat on the Arkansas Supreme Court is technically nonpartisan, but the close ties of one of the two main candidates to the state Republican Party — she's married to its leader — highlight just how partisan such campaigns ha...

New Rochelle, New York Personal Injury Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact Kommer, Bave & Ollman, LLP, in New Rochelle, New York, immediately. We can answer all your questions and work with you to determine if you have the grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. The attorneys at our firm are determined to resolve even the most difficult of cases. We will work closely with you to determine the best course of action to get your claim or case resolved in the most efficient way possible. We will fight for your right to compensation! No one should have to suffer a financial burden from the result of another person’s carelessness. The attorneys at Kommer, Bave & Ollman, LLP will aggressively fight to ensure that justice is served on your behalf.