Tax is on taxable income

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I continue to read and hear that the additional 3 percent tax is on income over $200,000. That is incorrect. In reading the initiative question, as passed by the voters of Maine, that additional 3 percent is on “taxable income” over $200,000. There is a very big difference.

Using myself as an example to demonstrate the difference, I receive much of my income from my military pension, Social Security and some VA disability payments, which are exempt from Maine taxable income. After subtracting these exempt income amounts and when other deductions for exemptions, and standard deductions are subtracted from my “income,” my “taxable income” was less than 15 percent of my actual total income.

Applying that same percentage to someone with $250,000 of “taxable income” (meaning they would pay the additional 3 percent on the $50,000 in excess of $200,000) would result in their “income” being $1,666,667. At that level, can they afford the additional $1,500 (3 percent of $50,000) in taxes to support education? I believe they can and it will not drive them out of the state.

Robert English, Wales

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