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March 3, 2014 / stacieshap

Revenue and Taxation

imagesOur democratic gubernatorial candidates all agree that reforming healthcare will provide significant revenue relief for the state, but how many years before we see the benefits? and, will the revenue gain be significant enough to solve all of the financial problems we face?    

Other sources will undoubtedly require tapping into in order to meet the needs of the commonwealth today .  This is an issue where the candidates have a range of views:

Don Berwick is the only candidate who has come out in favor of progressive tax reform.  He will also seek to close loopholes in our tax code, and utilize savings through healthcare reform.

Martha Coakley doesn’t feel that tax reform is needed, but is not opposed to considering it as a last resort.  She believes a tweaking of the system is what we need; more efficiency, streamlining, and shifting money from less critical areas to more vital ones.

Steve Grossman is looking to utilize revenue from the Internet Sales Tax, Casinos, and the enforcement of claw back agreements, but is open to considering income tax reform as long as it doesn’t negatively impact citizens of lesser means.

On the Issue – OP-EDS:

ARTICLES:

Responses to REVENUE questions at DEBATES:

  • Harvard Dems Debate – 2/26/14:  Watch Debate – Related question at 54:25
  • Lincoln Debate – Lincoln DTC  1/18/14:  Watch Debate – Related question at 39:12
  • Lexington Debate – Open House w/ Jay Kaufman 1/16/14:  Watch Debate – Related questions at 65:00 & 75:30

PROGRESSIVE MASS ISSUES SURVEY:

CANDIDATES QUOTES FROM SEIU FORUM:  3/15/14

When the candidates were asked just how they would pay for the priorities of their respective administrations, some explained that tax increases were possibilities while others focused on reforms they saw would equate to savings, which could be spent elsewhere.

Steve Grossman, the state’s current treasurer, said he would seek public-private partnerships to help fund some of his priorities but also that he isn’t “taking revenue off the table.”

“If we go the route of revenue and there’s a strong case that can be made for that, we have to make sure those who are low and moderate-income families will be protected from tax increases,” he said.

Martha Coakley, who is presently the attorney general, said Massachusetts is a state where people are “willing to pitch in” and help pay for solutions to the commonwealth’s problems. “When we haven’t got the funding to deal with the things we care about, it is because we haven’t made a good case. We will invest in the money we need to and get everybody behind it,” she said.

Don Berwick, the former administrator of the federal Medicare and Medicaid programs under President Barack Obama, said increasing revenue is important in the context of growing an economy, but he feels that money can be saved from real health care reforms to help pay for his priorities.  He also said closing tax loopholes is important, and that he favors a tax structure where low-income residents have lower tax rated than those who earn higher. “I will fight for that as your governor.”

Read the full article here

 

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