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Doing Tax Policy at the Ballot Is Not for the Faint of Heart

Picture this: you arrive at your polling place this November and start filling in your ballot. Member of Congress? Check. State legislators? You did your homework! Mayor? Good to go. Whether certain property tax exemptions provided for agricultural equipment and certain farm products should be expanded to include a merger of two or more family-owned […]

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Coloradans to Vote on Structurally Unsound Property and Cannabis Tax Changes

On November 2, in addition to electing various city council and school board members, Colorado voters will decide two important questions of state tax policy. Proposition 120 would reduce property tax assessment rates for two subclasses of property and require the state to spend up to $25 million a year, for up to five years, […]

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New Jersey May Be the First State Without an Excise Tax Levy on Recreational Marijuana

Last week, New Jersey’s legislature took the first step towards making recreational marijuana legal when Senator and Majority Whip Nicholas P. Scutari (D) and Senate President Stephen M. Sweeney (D) introduced Senate Bill 21 (S21), New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act. If enacted, S21 would legalize and tax recreational marijuana in […]

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Election Analysis: California and Colorado Voters Resist Temptation to Shift More of Property Tax Burden to Businesses

In Tuesday’s election, voters in two states—California and Colorado—were tasked with deciding whether to amend their states’ constitution to change how the property tax burden is distributed. In many ways, the ballot measures were mirror images of each other, but the outcomes were similar. California Proposition 15 sought to shift more of the property tax […]

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Election Analysis: Why Voters Split the Difference on Income Tax Measures

Illinois voters rejected a high graduated rate income tax while Arizonans embraced a large income tax rate increase for high earners, among the many attention-grabbing results from Tuesday’s elections—most of which, admittedly, weren’t about taxes. Coloradans, meanwhile, ratified an income tax cut in a year that many expected voters to instead be weighing in on […]

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Election Analysis: Recreational Marijuana Now Legal in Four More States

Tuesday, voters in four states, Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota, approved ballot measures legalizing recreational marijuana. The vote was only close in one state, South Dakota. That raises the total to 15 states plus the District of Columbia that have legalized recreational marijuana one way or another. Recreational marijuana has been a hot […]

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Arizona Proposition 208 Threatens Arizona’s Status as a Destination for Interstate Migration

Next month, Arizona voters will decide whether to create a new fifth income tax bracket that would raise the top rate from 4.5 percent to 8 percent. Proposition 208 would create an additional 3.5 percent tax on income above $250,000 ($500,000 for joint filers) to generate additional revenue for education. The tax would be levied […]

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Taxation of Tobacco and Vapor Products on the Ballot in Oregon

Oregon voters will weigh in on taxation of tobacco and nicotine products next month. If voters pass Measure 108, the Tobacco and E-Cigarette Tax Increase for Health Programs Measure, it would increase taxes on cigarettes and cigars and introduce a new tax on vapor products beginning January 2021. The measure was passed by the Oregon […]

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State and Local Tax Ballot Measures to Watch on Election Day 2020

Featured Ballot Measures Arizona Proposition 207 Arizona Proposition 207 would legalize recreational marijuana and tax retail sales at 16 percent of retail price. Arizona forecasts roughly $166 million in excise tax revenue when the market has matured, and this revenue would be allocated to community colleges, police departments, fire departments, transportation funding, and a new Justice […]

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Colorado Proposition 116: Will Voters Reduce the State Income Tax Rate?

This Election Day, Colorado voters will weigh in on Proposition 116, the Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative. It would permanently reduce the state’s flat income tax rate from 4.63 to 4.55 percent and be retroactive to January 1, 2020, meaning taxpayers would benefit from the relief starting this year. It is […]