In The News: Public Finance

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Proposed 'Millionaire Tax' Struck Down By Massachusetts High Court

Jun 18 2018

By Steve Brown, New England Public Radio

Attorney General Maura Healey ruled last year that the proposed amendment to the state’s constitution was legal, and qualified for the ballot, but opponents including executives from Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, the Massachusetts High Technology Council and others disagreed. They took the AG to court to challenge the constitutionality of the amendment.
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SJC knocks millionaires tax off November ballot

Jun 18 2018

By Michael Jonas, CommonWealth Magazine

he Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, one of five plaintiffs challenging the ballot question, hailed the ruling. “Today is a great day for all Massachusetts taxpayers because the court has upheld the time-honored constitutional principle that limits the initiative process,” Eileen McAnneny, the group’s president, said in a statement. “By rejecting the notion that a small special interest group can usurp legislative power by including unrelated tax and spending provisions in the same ballot initiative, the court has preserved the state’s ability to make deliberative and fiscally sound choices.”
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‘Millionaire Tax’ Ballot Question Struck Down in MA

Jun 18 2018

By Jack Huffman, Courthouse News Service

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation meanwhile celebrated the ruling for backing “the time-honored constitutional principle that limits the initiative process.” “By rejecting the notion that a small special interest group can usurp legislative power by including unrelated tax and spending provisions in the same ballot initiative, the court has preserved the state’s ability to make deliberative and fiscally sound choices,” the organization said in a statement.
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Court blocks 'millionaire tax' question from state ballot

Jun 18 2018

AP / The Montreal Gazatte

Eileen McAnneny, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, which joined in the lawsuit, said after the ruling that Monday was “a great day for all Massachusetts taxpayers,” because the court had upheld longstanding limitations on ballot questions. “By invalidating this ballot initiative, the court has signaled that the end does not justify the means, no matter how popular the proposal,” she said in a statement.
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Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Scratches 'Millionaires Tax' From The Ballot

Jun 18 2018

By Paul Tuthill, WAMC

One of the plaintiffs in the suit, Eileen McAnneny, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, is very pleased with the court’s decision. "There were enormous fiscal, legal, and economic implications of this ballot initiative, so I am very glad the court found in our favor," said McAnneny.
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Relief and dismay as court strikes down millionaire's tax ballot question

Jun 18 2018

By Shira Schoenberg, MassLive

Eileen McAnneny, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, called it a "great day for all Massachusetts taxpayers." "By rejecting the notion that a small special interest group can usurp legislative power by including unrelated tax and spending provisions in the same ballot initiative, the court has preserved the state's ability to make deliberative and fiscally sound choices," McAnneny said.
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Reaction to SJC's tax ruling runs gamut from jubilation to outrage

Jun 18 2018

State House News Service / The Lowell Sun

"This case was not about whether a graduated income tax is good public policy or bad public policy, it was about how the proponents tried to achieve it -- a method in direct violation of the Constitution under which the Legislature's deliberative taxing and spending authority would have been severely limited.

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Pension and a paycheck: State may loosen ‘double dipping’ rules

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May 31 2018

By Matt Stout, The Boston Globe

Eileen McAnneny, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, a business-backed budget watchdog group, said lawmakers have to beware of unintended consequences but added the proposal could help. She pointed to an “approaching retirement tsunami” in the public sector, in which cities, towns, and the state could use the new limit to tap “a talent pool that they wouldn't have otherwise in this low unemployment environment.”
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Beacon Hill moves to raise $50 million in fees on rental cars, real estate transactions

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May 31 2018

By Joshua Miller, The Boston Globe

Doug Howgate of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation said the group estimates the total new annual revenue from the car rental fee and community preservation surcharge alone would be in the range of $35 million to $50 million. “That’s a lot of money,” he said. “Any time you are generating multiple tens of millions in new revenue, you need to make sure people are comfortable with how it’s being spent and how it’s being tracked over time.”
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WBUR Poll: Ballot Questions On Sales Tax Rollback And 'Millionaire's Tax' Maintain High Support

May 31 2018

By Steve Brown, WBUR

When it comes to the millionaire's tax, Eileen McAnneny, president and secretary of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said she's concerned about volatility, as well as revenues drying up in economic downturns. "So you build in a billion dollars more in education, and the money is there one year, and it's not the next," she said. "But the programs and all that are in place, and so it creates more challenges in the budget."
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