Baker’s supplementary budget would set aside $2.9 billion to return to taxpayers

BOSTON (WWLP) — On Wednesday, Governor Baker tabled a $1.6 billion supplementary budget and earmarked more than $2.9 billion to return to taxpayers under Section 62F.

Section 62F caps state-authorized tax collections at a level tied to annual growth in wages and salaries. Income above this ceiling must be returned to taxpayers through a credit. However, some lawmakers are pushing for the money to be returned by check to taxpayers. It is estimated that a taxpayer earning $75,000 would receive $250.

The supplementary estimates come on the heels of the Department of Revenue telling auditor Suzanne Bump that the department estimates about $2.94 billion is due back under the 1986 voter-approved law. Under the law, the auditor has until September 20 to certify these figures. However, Bump could certify the amount before the deadline.

“The great thing about this law that was passed in 1986 is that it allows every taxpayer in Massachusetts to get back the money they gave to the state. Contrary to what the legislature was trying to to do, which is to choose people to collect money, which we have all contributed to,” said Paul Craney of the Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance.

Baker’s office said if that amount is certified by the auditor, the state will still have a $2.3 billion surplus. The state’s surplus left the rainy day fund at a record $6.9 billion.

The legislature will have to take up Baker’s budget bill in informal sessions, where a lawmaker can derail an entire bill.

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