Friday, February 19, 2010

Willis co-sponsors tax bill on excessive Wall Street bonuses

State Representative Roberta Willis (D-64th District) is co-sponsoring a bill that would tax the bonuses at only companies that received taxpayer funds through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).

The bill (HB 5175), “An Act Imposing A Tax On Bonuses Received By Employees Of Businesses That Received Funds Under The Troubled Asset Relief Program” has been filed and goes next to the legislature’s Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee.”

Under the bill, the tax imposed on an individual employed by a business that received TARP funds, would be at a rate of 90% on such a bonus that is over $250,000 for a couple filing jointly or $100,000 for an individual.

For example, if an employee received a $5 million bonus as a result of TARP money, the first $100,000 for individuals and the first $250,000 for joint filers would be exempt.

The employee’s regular salary would not be affected by this bonus tax, only TARP bonus money. There are several other legislators who have also signed onto the bill.

“The purpose of this bill is to try to require those who created our economic meltdown to contribute to the recovery,” Rep. Willis said. “Hard working taxpayers saved Wall Street and it’s time for taxpayers to get their money back.”

“This is not about revenge or getting even. It’s about fairness and economic justice,” Rep. Willis said. “Everywhere I go, talking with constituents, they have expressed their outrage over the Wall Street bailout and reports of lavish bonuses being paid out.”

“This legislation sends the message that we hear the outcry from our constituents and hopefully the bill will pass the legislature and will be signed into law by the governor,” Rep. Willis said.

Representative Willis represents Cornwall, Goshen, Salisbury, Sharon and a portion of Torrington. She is House Chair of the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee. She also serves on the Appropriations and Environment Committees.



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