Washington voters are considering an initiative that would impose in income tax on individuals who earn more than $200,000 per year (and households that bring in more than $400,000). The state currently does not have an income tax of any kind. If passed, Initiative 1098 (pdf) would also cut state property taxes and exempt some businesses from the business and occupation tax. Not surprisingly, the proponents of I-1098 are playing up the tax cut, while those who oppose the initiative have focused their campaign on the income tax hike.
Washingtonians who championed the tax measure were encouraged by Oregon’s passage of Measures 66 and 67 earlier this year. This pair of ballot measures increased the state income tax on individuals earning more than $250,000 (and households bringing in more than $500,000). Washington and Oregon aren’t the only states to consider raising taxes on high income earners in the past year. Eight states passed new income taxes affecting the affluent in 2009, though each state defines “rich” a little differently.
Are you a Washington voter? What questions do you have about I-1098? How would Oregonians be affected if the these taxes in Washington changed?
- Marilyn Watkins: Policy director of the Economic Opportunity Institute
- Amber Carter: Director of tax and fiscal policy with the Association of Washington Businesses
- Ashlea Ebeling: Associate editor at Forbes Media