Big business lobbyists are supporting regressive taxes and fees that disproportionately impact low- and middle-income people, in order to fund investments in our roads, bridges, and public transportation. Their proposals include a 15-cent/gallon increase in the gas tax, higher tolls, and new fees on ride-hailing. Noticeably absent is any contribution from large, profitable businesses.
We need major investments in transportation, but we cannot balance our budgets on the backs of working people! Low- and moderate-income households already pay a greater share of their income in taxes than households with higher incomes do. And too many large, profitable corporations that do significant business in Massachusetts pay only minimal taxes here by exploiting loopholes, tax breaks, and offshore tax havens. A 2018 report by the Council on State Taxation (COST), a corporate trade association, ranked Massachusetts in the bottom fifth of all states in terms of overall business tax levels, and found that there are only eight other states in which businesses pay a smaller share of total state and local taxes.
We need major and continued investments in our roads, bridges, and public transportation systems all across Massachusetts. That’s why Raise Up Massachusetts is leading the fight to place the Fair Share Amendment, which would raise $2 billion each year for transportation and public education, on the 2022 ballot.
In the meantime, large, profitable corporations move their goods on our publicly-funded roads and bridges, bring their employees to work on our public transportation systems, and benefit from our highly educated workforce. But too many of these same corporations use loopholes to hide their profits, exploit tax breaks to avoid paying their fair share of taxes, and take advantage of weak corporate disclosure laws to keep the public in the dark about just how little they contribute.
Rather than only asking working people to pay more, it is time for large, profitable corporations to pay their fair share!
Raise Up Massachusetts does not support a revenue package comprised entirely of regressive taxes and fees. Instead, a revenue package must include the following three elements to ensure that corporations are participating in their shared responsibility to fund critical investments in our transportation systems:
- GILTI (Global Intangible Low Taxed Income) – Many multinational corporations who do business in MA dodge taxes by using provisions of the federal tax code to shift their US profits to offshore tax havens. Massachusetts should do the same as other states and federal law, and tax a portion of those offshore profits.
- Tiered Corporate Minimum – Many large corporations who do business in MA use various tax breaks and loopholes to pay only the existing corporate minimum tax of $456 per year. A tiered corporate minimum tax would ensure that larger corporations pay a minimum in proportion to the size of their business in MA, while small businesses continue paying the current minimum.
- Corporate Disclosure – Research and informed policy making to close corporate loopholes is made more difficult because of the lack of available information about how much taxes specific corporations pay. Corporate disclosure laws would help identify corporate bad actors and measure the effects of existing corporate tax loopholes.
Voters agree! A recent statewide poll of likely voters in Massachusetts, conducted for Raise Up MA, found that voters strongly believe that the wealthy and large corporations aren’t paying their fair share. In the poll, between 69 and 78 percent of voters supported our progressive revenue-raising proposals, while large majorities opposed raising regressive user fees. See the full results here.
TAKE ACTION: Raise your voice! Join our coalition and the #CorporateFairShare movement, call or email your legislators today, and ask them to pass a revenue package that is fair to working people! https://raiseupma.cp.bsd.net/co/corpfairshare