Tax and Budget

July 7, 2017
In the early hours of the morning on July 4th, Maine Lawmakers enacted a two year budget that repealed the voter approved three percent surcharge on household income over $200,000 and gave a massive tax cut to the top two percent of households. This is the third biennial budget in eight years that contained tax breaks for the wealthiest Mainers. The top five percent of Mainers now pay the lowest effective tax rate on average compared to all other income groups. These tax breaks for the wealthiest come at a cost to investments in thriving communities and worsen income inequality.

Tax and BudgetEach year, Maine leaders set priorities and make choices for allocating state and local revenues for education, health care, public assistance, economic development, public safety, roads and bridges, environmental protection, and other services important to Maine families, businesses, and communities. They also determine how to fund those revenues through taxes, fees, borrowing, and other sources. For 20 years, MECEP has provided exhaustive, timely, and respected analysis of Maine tax and budget policies to ensure that Maine invests its limited revenues wisely in ways that most benefit Maine working families, especially their economic security, health care needs, and education and job training and that encourage strong economic growth by addressing the needs of Maine businesses for skilled workers, promoting local markets, and investing in research and development. We also assess the fairness of Maine’s tax policies, work to eliminate ineffective, wasteful tax breaks, especially for large corporations, and assure greater progressivity of Maine’s revenues.

Most Recent
July 13, 2017
Using the 10 percent tax rate approved by Maine voters, the state is likely to bring in about $18 million a year once the market is established, in two or three years or so, said James Myall, a policy analyst for the Maine Center for Economic Policy.
July 13, 2017
James Myall, a policy analyst for the Maine Center for Economic Policy, said the bigger the gap between the legal price of marijuana, after taxes, and the street price of black market marijuana, the more people will turn to illicit suppliers.
July 7, 2017
In the early hours of the morning on July 4th, Maine Lawmakers enacted a two year budget that repealed the voter approved three percent surcharge on household income over $200,000 and gave a massive tax cut to the top two percent of households. This is the third biennial budget in eight years that contained tax breaks for the wealthiest Mainers. The top five percent of Mainers now pay the lowest effective tax rate on average compared to all other income groups. These tax breaks for the wealthiest come at a cost to investments in thriving communities and worsen income inequality.
June 29, 2017
James Myall A vibrant economy that works for everyone needs strong public services, and above all, good schools. And that requires everyone to pay their fair share towards those services.
June 28, 2017
“Let’s start with the obvious: State employees will lose wages that generate $2.5 million in daily economic impact, according to an analysis (http://bit.ly/2tqgDw7) from the liberal Maine Center for Economic Policy, with $944,000 of that in Kennebec County alone.” by Michael Shepherd, Bangor Daily News, June 28, 2017 With no agreement in sight on a two-year budget in the Maine Legislature, the state is as close to a government shutdown as it has been since 1991.
June 26, 2017
Don Cookson, host of WZON-AM’s The Pulse Morning Show, interviewed Sarah Austin about the threat of a state government shutdown should the governor and legislators fail to reach a budget agreement by July 1.
June 23, 2017
  As the state’s two year budget comes due, Republican lawmakers continue to hold negotiations hostage over demands to repeal the voter approved 3% surcharge on household income over $200,000.
June 23, 2017
Augusta (June 23, 2017) —  Last night House Republicans presented a budget proposal to the Committee of Conference twenty days after initial proposals passed out of the Appropriations Committee.
June 22, 2017
Sarah Austin is a policy analyst with the Maine Center for Economic Policy. The head of the group helped write the ballot question that imposed the surcharge.