Special session begins, taxes likely to go up
Annapolis, Maryland: A special session of the General Assembly began on Monday, with lawmakers set to consider measures concerning an income tax increase on people who make more than $100,000 as well as tax increases on tobacco products other than cigarettes. This package of budget measures also included a split of teacher pension costs with local governments. These revenue raising steps are being taken in order to avert major budget cuts that were left on the table when the legislature ended its last session on April 9.
The most significant measure, the income tax change, would result in a state income tax rate rise from 4.75 to 5% for single filers making between $100,001 and $125,000 (and joint filers who make between $150,001 and $175,000). Single and joint filers who make more than $250,000 would pay 5.75 percent.
Republicans were unhappy with the decision to reconvene, and generally felt that it was imprudent to reconvene mainly to raise taxes. State Senator Edward R. Reilly said, "We need to have self-control, and we need to live within the budget we have." The session is only expected to last a few days, and will likely be over before the end of the week.