In a matter of hours, Colorado voters will head to the polls to decide the fate of Amendment 66, the controversial ballot measure that would, if approved, scrap Colorado’s 4.63% flat income tax and replace it with a progressive system that would have the state taking 5% of income earned by households making less than $75,000 and 5.9% of all incomes in excess of that. This 27% increase in the top state income tax rate would siphon approximately $1 billion from the Colorado economy every year.
By adversely affecting those employers responsible for the majority of job creation in the state, Amendment 66 would be detrimental to Colorado's economic health. As ATR pointed out in an analysis of IRS data last month, over half a million Colorado small businesses file under the individual income tax system and would see their taxes go up and their job-creating capacity significantly reduced if Amendment 66 is approved.
Proponents of Amendment 66 portray it as a tax increase on the rich. Yet a recent report by the non-partisan Tax Foundation found that this massive tax hike would hit lower and middle-income families particularly hard. A taxpayer earning $50,000 annually would pay nearly $110 more in taxes per year, which is the average monthly cost of heating a home in Colorado during the state’s cold winter months.
With individuals, families, and employers across Colorado struggling to cope with the disastrous rollout of Obamacare, along with the more than 20 tax hikes President Obama has signed into law in just the past five years, the last thing that they need is a massive increase in their state tax burden.
ATR urges Colorado voters to reject Amendment 66