Millions of New Yorkers are facing unemployment, the threat of eviction, and the brunt of a deadly pandemic. But while we’re suffering, billionaires are making record profits off of our suffering. Today, our state is facing a $60 billion budget deficit and in response, our governor wants to make deep cuts to necessary social services like schools, hospitals, and transportation. This means firing teachers, closing hospitals, and shutting down the subway and bus service we all rely on.
We cannot allow Cuomo to balance the budget on the backs of working class New Yorkers. To save our state, we must hold Wall Street, corporations, and the rich accountable. Join our fight for Tax The Rich and fund a future for everyone in New York.
Currently, New York’s constitution prohibits the taxation of intangible property like stocks and bonds. While all New Yorkers are taxed on their homes, the richest among us are allowed to hold on to their most valuable property tax-free. If we are to fund this state’s future and begin to address economic inequality in New York, we must amend our state’s constitution to allow for a wealth tax.
Intergenerational wealth transfer enables the rich and powerful to ensure that their enormous wealth stays within their families. Right now, New York deals with this situation ineffectively by placing a small tax on only the largest estates. Instead, we should leverage an inheritance tax to increase funding for healthcare, housing, and public education. Our proposal taxes inheritances aggressively with a marginal rate of 50% on any inheritance over $10 million. Exceptions—like retirement funds, family-owned farms, and primary residences—are modeled after Oregon’s system.
Today, a New Yorker earning $21,000 pays essentially the same tax rate as a New Yorker earning $900,000. As a matter of economic policy and basic fairness, this is not right. Our tax code should be progressive, placing bigger tax burdens on those who can most afford them. Our proposal would create new brackets and rates for individuals earning more than $300,000 per year and married filers that earn more than $450,000 per year. The people who’d see the most meaningful tax increases would be those earning an income of more than $1 million per year.
One of the primary ways rich people earn money is through sales from their vast stock portfolios. The federal government taxes this money at a much lower rate than the money working people make from wages. We want that federal policy to end right away. Until that happens, we can address the problem at the state level by adding a surcharge right here in New York. Our proposal adds a capital gains tax that is equal to the federal tax break for the rich. It also kicks in at $150,000 in capital gains so that retirees and other lower-income investors are unaffected.
One of the single biggest changes in New York over the past four decades is the growth of the financial industry. Today, it represents a third of New York’s economy. Other global financial centers, like London and Hong Kong, impose a small fee called a financial transaction tax any time a stock, bond, or derivative changes hands. New York should follow suit.
Donald Trump’s signature policy in 2017 was a massive handout to huge corporations. We can undo the impact of these policies at the state level. By adding a surcharge to New York’s corporate tax rate and on the income of certain kinds of “pass-through entities” businesses would pay the same rates they did four years ago while providing the state with billions in desperately-needed revenue.