October 14, 2010
The proposed income tax on the rich would either run business out of Washington State or provide a responsible and stable source of revenue for education. Those were among the arguments presented from both sides at the I-1098 forum held earlier this week in Tacoma.
Representing the pro side of the argument were I-1098 proponents, Bill Gates Sr. and Nick Hanauer, a partner at venture capital firm Second Avenue Partners. Former US Senator Slade Gorton and Matt McIlwain, managing director of Madrona Venture group spoke against the ballot measure. The proposal would create a five percent tax rate on annual incomes exceeding 200-thousand dollars for individuals and 400-thousand dollars for couples. The rate would go up to 9 percent on annual individual incomes of 500-thousand dollars and one million dollars for couples. The measure would also cut the State’s portion of everyone’s property tax by 20 percent and newly exempt 118-thousand businesses from the State’s B and O tax.