Matt McIlwain, as managing director of the Madrona Venture Group, is paid to cry wolf and rally the troops against passage of Senate Bill 5096 [“A capital gains income tax is not needed and will hurt Washington’s economy,” Feb. 22, Opinion]:
The troops are the 2% who would pay this tax, but also those good citizens who live in fear that any change in the current tax structure is the precursor of a state income tax.
Folks, it will take a constitutional amendment to bring about a Washington state income tax, and that won’t happen anytime soon. Washington (9.21% sales tax) remains in the highflying company of Tennessee (9.53%), Louisiana (9.52%), Arkansas (9.47%) and Alabama (9.22%) as the five states with the highest, and most inequitable, average combined state and local sales tax rates.
Anyone genuinely interested in racial justice will see that a state capital gains tax is a step forward in the fight for racial justice.
SB 5096 would impose a 7% tax on the capital gains of the sale of assets — like stocks and bonds — above $250,000. It would affect 2% of earners in the state of Washington. It is not an income tax. It is a capital-gains tax. Please write, email and call your senators to vote “yes.”
Margaret Ellsworth, Redmond