Millionaire’s Tax Update: The SJC Decision

Thursday, June 28, 2018
Section Review: Taxation Law

In the June 14 edition of eJournal, the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Taxation Law Section Council published a recap of “Millionaire’s Tax: Fairness or Folly,” a debate held in April at the Boston University School of Law. The debate centered on a then-proposed ballot question regarding whether the state should impose a surtax on income over $1 million, with the added revenue earmarked for transportation and education.

On June 18, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts ruled that the ballot question is unconstitutional because it addresses three unrelated subjects (imposing a graduated tax, funding transportation and funding education), contrary to the specific requirements of the Massachusetts Constitution. Since, per the court, the three subjects addressed by the citizens’ initiative petition were neither related nor mutually dependent, the petition must be taken off the ballot for the November election.