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Author: Tamarine Cornelius

Tax policy changes exacerbate racial and ethnic disparities in Wisconsin

Tax policy can be a powerful tool for enhancing racial and ethnic equity, but two new reports show how recent tax changes at the state and federal level have disproportionately blocked households of color from receiving tax cuts, even as they protected or expanded tax cuts aimed at wealthy, white households. State and federal tax systems affect taxpayers of different races differently, even when those policies don’t explicitly mention race. A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “How the Federal Tax Code Can Better Advance Racial Equity” explains how seemingly “race-neutral” provisions in the tax...

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Proposed Wisconsin budget aims at building a strong economy by contributing to what works

April 15th is the annual deadline for most people to file their income taxes. The day comes with many negative messages about taxes. But it is worth remembering that to build broad-based prosperity, it requires investing in what works and Wisconsin cannot do that without the revenue from taxes. The budget proposed by Governor Evers is an example of how taxes contribute to broad-based prosperity: by enabling investments in assets that help businesses thrive and hard-working people climb into the middle class. His budget builds on Wisconsin’s tradition of supporting high-quality schools and preschools, affordable higher education, a healthy...

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Raising the overtime threshold would improve quality of life for Wisconsin workers

The U.S. Department of Labor recently announced a proposal to set the salary threshold under which American workers are entitled to overtime pay to about $35,300 a year. While the Trump administration is touting the rule as a way to bring “common sense, consistency, and higher wages to working Americans,” the adoption of this new rule would leave behind millions of working people who would have gotten overtime protections under the 2016 guidelines by the Obama administration. Federal law requires that people working more than 40 hours a week be paid 1.5 times their pay rate for the extra...

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Equal Pay Day: How far into 2019 women must work to match men from 2018

April 2 was National Equal Pay Day, which marked how long women have to work into this year to catch up to what men earned in the previous year, on average. Women of color must work even longer into this year to bring their 2018-19 earnings up to the same level as men’s earnings from last year. Race and gender-based pay disparities devalue women, especially women of color, and rob them of opportunities to achieve financial security and establish wealth. Workers should not pay a penalty for being female or of color. But in Wisconsin, women – and especially...

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Shared Wealth: Investment strategies needed for a path to mutual prosperity

Everyone in Wisconsin deserves the opportunity to fully benefit from the state’s economic growth. Our economy, our communities, our schools, and our families will fare better when every person in the state has full access to opportunity. A new budget framework from the Wisconsin Budget Project shows how effective investments in the state’s families, schools, and communities, can promote full opportunity and move Wisconsin along the path to shared prosperity. For our state to be competitive and prosperous, we also need to remove the structural barriers to opportunity for people of color. To fund the investments that expand opportunity...

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State “Millionaire Tax” could generate investment funds without harming economic growth

States can raise taxes on millionaires to build revenue for shared priorities without harming economic growth, according to a new report. Eight states and Washington, D.C. have implemented some version of a millionaires’ tax in recent years, raising tax rates on the people who are taking an increasingly large share of all income. After raising top income rates, most of those states experienced economic and income growth that equaled or outpaced that of their neighbors. In addition to helping fund critical services, the targeted tax rate increases were a response to the growing share of income that is taken...

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