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Sen. Looney files bills for statewide property tax, capital gains surcharge

Senate President Pro-Tem Martin Looney, D-New Haven, filed two bills to implement a statewide property tax on residential and commercial property and to implement a surcharge on capital gains.

Although the bills are only concept bills at this point and therefore lack detail, the statewide property tax “would establish a one mill state-wide tax on commercial residential and commercial property, provided the first three hundred thousand dollars of the assessed value of a residential property shall be exempt from such tax.”

The exemption would not appear to apply to commercial properties and would largely target wealthy towns with high residential property values.

The capital gains bill would apply “a surcharge of one percent of the net gain from the sale or exchange of capital assets” on taxpayers who earn $500,000 or more as an individual, $800,000 or more as the head of a household and $1 million or more if married and filing jointly.

The bills come as coalitions, policy organizations and labor organizations have spent the past year pushing to increase taxes on the wealthy as a means to make up for state revenue lost due to the pandemic.

CT Voices for Children proposed establishing a surcharge on capital gains as well establishing a statewide tax on mansions valued at more than $1.5 million and increasing the income tax rates for high earners to match that of New York or New Jersey.

They argue the current tax structure unfairly burdens working-class and poor families who have to pay more of their income toward taxes than the wealthy.

Looney received an award from CT Voices in December for his work in legislature and said at the time that Connecticut should make “our tax structure more progressive still by having a separate tax on very high level income from capital gains and dividends at a separate rate from regular income and also from increasing the top rate.”

A recent report from the Pioneer Institute in Massachusetts argued that Connecticut raising taxes on the wealthy three times in 2009, 2011 and 2015 contributed to more high-income earners leaving the state for lower tax states and has not solved any of Connecticut’s budgetary issues.

According to data from the Internal Revenue Service, Connecticut has seen a net loss of more than $12 billion in adjusted gross income between 2012 and 2018 due to outmigration. According to the Pioneer Institute report, 64 percent of that loss came from those earning over $200,000 per year — the highest income level used by the IRS in their migration data.

Gov. Ned Lamont has thus far resisted calls for raising taxes and the latest revenue estimates indicate Connecticut has gone from having a deficit this year to a surplus of roughly $70 million due to revenue increases tied to Wall Street gains, the income tax and cutting expenses.

Connecticut does face a $2.5 billion deficit in the next biennium due to the pandemic but still has over $3 billion in its Rainy Day Fund, and state leaders are hopeful that more federal aid will arrive under President Joe Biden’s administration.

Both bills are referred to the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee.

**Meghan Portfolio contributed to this article**

Marc E. Fitch

Marc E. Fitch is the author of several books and novels including Shmexperts: How Power Politics and Ideology are Disguised as Science and Paranormal Nation: Why America Needs Ghosts, UFOs and Bigfoot. Marc was a 2014 Robert Novak Journalism Fellow and his work has appeared in The Federalist, American Thinker, The Skeptical Inquirer, World Net Daily and Real Clear Policy. Marc has a Master of Fine Arts degree from Western Connecticut State University. Marc can be reached at [email protected]


  1. Robert Zapp
    January 22, 2021 @ 11:14 am

    Add to the expected horrendous cost ct homes business to be imposed by the green new deal, ct will tank ECONOMICALLY.


  2. Jonathan Arnow
    January 22, 2021 @ 11:52 am

    What could possibly be wrong with this idea?


  3. Robert Armetta
    January 22, 2021 @ 12:08 pm

    Stop raising my taxes! You get way too much as it is! cut your salary instead of stealing from the citizens. My earnings are not at that level, but you are chasing the people who are creating the wealth that creates the jobs which employ the people in this state! one day I will leave too and the only ones left will be state employees at the rate you are going! Its easy to pick on the wealthier people in Connecticut because there are fewer of them, But soon we will vote with our feet and leave for a state where they are not constantly creating policies such as Martin Looney’s


  4. donald kivela
    January 22, 2021 @ 3:38 pm

    Looney needs to be in a looney bin
    we need less spending not more taxes


  5. Glenn kalata
    January 22, 2021 @ 4:25 pm

    Looney should retire. Cut costs connecticut, too much goes to UCONN. Too much waste up in Hartford.


    • John Thompson
      January 24, 2021 @ 8:27 am

      Now we see by the dawn’s early light the taxation of prosperity framed in hallowed rhetoric of equality. The plantation whip has been exchanged for the bureaucrat ink. a man under physical torment can pint to his wounds and those witnessing the assault scream at the height of consciousness at the outrage Of abuse but those abused by ink are greeted with a discourse of necessity. Abusing a man’s success and claiming the fruits of his labor in the name of justifiable redistributive policy is no different than owning the man. Whipping a man with ink to the roar of the crowd, implies that success deserves punishment and wealth a public rebuke. Once we justified slavery as a just treatment of the inferior now the exceptional of talent are the new inferior receiving their just reward. Our society holds this truth to be self evident : that those having more are the faulted for others having less. Individual accomplishment has become a REPROACH to society instead of a glorification of its OPPORTUNITY. What does it say of us when we condemn the existence of the results of freedom as a witness bearing the assurance of its lack of equity? If everyone has a constitutional right to be poor the wealthy fail to condemn such a choice and are puzzled at those reproaching the choice to be rich as less protected.


  6. Wayne natZEl
    January 22, 2021 @ 4:27 pm

    After living in CoNnecticut my WHOLE life, i Retired lAst month, sold my house in one day, and moved to florIda.

    It looks like i got ouT just in Time. Connecticut will never change. It is a beautiful stAte, but i couldnt afford to stay there on a retirement income.

    A one party state will Never do what’s neCessary to control spending because they Dont have to.

    Good luck to my formeR NutMeggers! YOU’LL Need it!


  7. AVa
    January 22, 2021 @ 4:32 pm

    Dont we already pay property taX? And where the hell is his maSk. Smh


  8. Michael Lamothe
    January 22, 2021 @ 6:07 pm

    If only these clowns were this creative in cutting the spending.


  9. Susan
    January 22, 2021 @ 6:27 pm

    Are farms exempt from this hike?


  10. Cato. Renasci
    January 22, 2021 @ 10:19 pm

    I am so Glad I moved to a low tax state on 1/1/2020


  11. ROn
    January 23, 2021 @ 7:23 am

    i think It is important to drive EVERYONE out and start with a large pot of poor people. Than we will all be equal.


  12. Dominic Famiglietti
    January 23, 2021 @ 8:12 am

    well I just recently sold my house and I am renting so this will work for me. when the dems destroy the housing market i will be able to buy a nicer house way cheaper without a morgage.


  13. Steve scinto
    January 23, 2021 @ 9:49 am

    Last one out, turn off the lights!


  14. Jay Mccall
    January 23, 2021 @ 10:19 am

    Mr. Fitch used a stale number of $ 2.5 billion deficit in the next biennium. Recently the projection has been changed to a small surplus.

    I keyed in lower case but the comment box changes all to caps.


    • Marc E. Fitch
      January 25, 2021 @ 10:11 am

      The current year deficit changed to a surplus, but the next biennium (as stated in the article) is projected at $2.5 billion as of the latest revenue numbers


  15. Joe hyNes
    January 23, 2021 @ 10:57 am

    As a person who is thinking of moving to ct this is scary stuff. Dont the pols know how this could accEleRate a mass exodus of high earners from the state?


  16. Michael Calise
    January 23, 2021 @ 4:05 pm

    This man is absolutly crazy. He needs to get out of politics!!!!!


  17. Kevin maloney
    January 23, 2021 @ 5:08 pm

    I heard he got DIVORCED…………from Reality


  18. john flynn
    January 24, 2021 @ 11:46 am

    lonney is supported by the SIEU and AFLCIO who pay unreported bribes through the seec and these unions do not have to report illegal payments to the legistalors that work for the unions. Payments to Union legislators with conflicts of interest don’t have to report the bribes.


  19. Larry
    January 25, 2021 @ 8:34 am

    How to put your state in the top 5 most outbound residents, written and practiced by democrats


  20. Barry cunningham
    January 25, 2021 @ 8:52 am

    Moved to dartmouth area of New hampshire in 2008. Fresh air, no traffic, interesting things goong on at dartmouth all the time, daily flights Out of lebanon to nyc or boston when Needed . . . And no inCome tax!


  21. Michelina Maturo
    January 26, 2021 @ 4:28 pm

    Why don’t you go after all the hospital especially Yale that take in 400 billion a year and everything they own is tax exempt and everything in there buildings are too.the village donate what 14 million a year WOW..stop taxing the POOR and middle class and go after them they own mostly all of new haven.I’ll march to that…


  22. Michelina Maturo
    January 26, 2021 @ 4:46 pm

    Why do you guys keep taxing the poor and middle class we are struggling to stay here..why don’t you tax the HOSPITALs and Yale they make 400 billion a year and everything they own inside and out is tax EXEMPT.They own mostly all of new haven so us poor people have to pay for THEM.why


  23. Stuart Shapiro
    January 27, 2021 @ 10:35 am

    Seems to be an easy money grab to overcome the state spending above its means. stop taxing your constituants. if we need money, why not stop procrastinating over leaglized marijuana which comes up every single session? last year polls idicated that over 64% of residents support it.


  24. Thad M Stewart
    January 31, 2021 @ 7:13 am

    Who in their right mind voted for this self serving wanna be dictator?


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