Report shows majority of proposed tax cuts benefit those earning $100K or moreA new report shows nearly two-thirds of a tax cut being weighed by GOP state lawmakers benefits people earning more than $100,000 a year.
By: By Shawn Johnson, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
A new report shows nearly two-thirds of a tax cut being weighed by GOP state lawmakers benefits people earning more than $100,000 a year.
A memo from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau shows 63.4 percent of the overall tax cut would be paid to people earning more than $100,000. That's partly because the tax plan proposed by Representative Dale Kooyenga would cut taxes for all income brackets, even the wealthiest.
Kooyenga would also flatten out the tax rates in Wisconsin so that by 2015, someone earning about $300,000 a year would pay the same 5.94 percent income tax rate as someone earning around $15,000.
Democrats who asked for the memo said it showed Republicans’ priorities. Racine Democrat Cory Mason told reporters at a State Capitol news conference that Republicans had the chance to use this money to reverse some of the cuts to schools last session.
“What there is instead, after the biggest cut from our kids and our schools in the state’s history … The Republicans are on the cusp of stealing that money to pay for a tax cut that by and large favors the rich,” Mason said.
When he introduced his tax plan, Representative Kooyenga said it was nearly impossible to cut income taxes without disproportionately affecting wealthier residents, since they pay a larger share of the overall tax burden.
GOP lawmakers are still grappling with the size and shape of the tax cut as they head into what is supposed to be the final day of meetings for the legislature's budget committee. Other high profile items left for them to decide include school funding, a proposed voucher school expansion and Governor Scott Walker's Medicaid budget.