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Payroll on the Ballot: November 8 Elections

Thomson Reuters Tax & Accounting  

Thomson Reuters Tax & Accounting  

Voters at the polls on Election Day not only had the opportunity to cast their ballot for candidates for various offices, but also to vote on state and local payroll-related ballot measures. The following is a list of the results for several state and local ballot initiatives relating to payroll:

California

Additional statewide income tax on wealthy rejected. The unofficial results from the California Secretary of State’s general election information webpage for November 8 show that a ballot item has been defeated by voters that would have added a 1.75% personal income tax on wages over $2 million, beginning in 2023. Proposition 30 states that the proceeds would have gone toward incentives for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure and wildfire prevention. The results will be certified by December 16, 2022.

Duarte voters deny healthcare worker minimum wage. Measure J proposed raising the minimum wage for healthcare workers to $25 per hour beginning on January 1, 2024; requiring annual increases to the minimum wage; and penalizing violations with a fine of up to $120 per worker per day. This proposal failed to pass by a margin of 64.12% (no) to 35.88% (yes).

Inglewood voters approve healthcare worker wage increase.  Inglewood City also had a ballot proposal (Measure HC) regarding wages for healthcare workers. The proposal would raise the minimum wage for healthcare workers to $25 dollars an hour, taking effect January 1st, 2024. However, unlike the Duarte proposal, this was approved by a margin of 53.22% to 46.78%.

Laguna Beach voters reject hotel worker proposal. Laguna Beach proposed an ordinance that would amend the Municipal Code to: (1) create a minimum hourly wage for hotel employees of $18, increasing annually; (2) establish workplace standards and protections for hotel employees; (3) authorize the City to adopt administrative regulations to implement the provisions of the ordinance; and (4) authorize the City and others to enforce the provisions of the ordinance. The proposition failed by a margin of 68.8% to 31.2%.

Colorado

Statewide tax reduction passes. A Colorado ballot measure proposed (Proposition 121) to reduce the state income tax rate from 4.55% to 4.40%. The measure passed by a margin of 65.53% to 34.47%

District of Columbia

Minimum wage increase for tipped employees approved. Voters in Washington, DC have approved a ballot measure that gradually increases the minimum wage for tipped employees until it equals the wage for non-tipped employees in 2027. This would eliminate the tip credit. The measure passed by a margin of 71.4% to 25.9%.

Massachusetts

Additional tax rate for high wage earners passes. Massachusetts voters voted on a constitutional amendment establishing an additional 4% state income tax on that portion of annual taxable income in excess of $1 million. This income level would be adjusted annually, by the same method used for federal income-tax brackets, to reflect increases in the cost of living. Revenues from this tax would be used, subject to appropriation by the state Legislature, for public education, public colleges and universities; and for the repair and maintenance of roads, bridges, and public transportation. The proposed amendment would apply to tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2023.

Note: At the time of publication, with 95% of the votes counted, the measure appears to be approved by a margin of 58% to 42%.

Nebraska

Minimum wage increase approved. Nebraska voters had the opportunity to vote on a ballot measure (Initiative 433) that would increase the minimum wage from $9.00 per hour to $10.50 per hour in 2023, with gradual annual increases to $15.00 an hour by 2026 and annual inflationary adjustments in future years.

At the time of publication, with 99% of the votes counted, the proposal appears to be approved by a margin of  58.2% to 41.8%.

Nevada

Minimum wage changes appear to have been approved. Voters in Nebraska had the opportunity to approve changes to the Nevada Constitution regarding the State’s minimum wage provisions. The ballot question included: (1) establishing the State’s minimum wage at $12 per hour worked; (2) removing the existing provisions setting different rates for the minimum wage based on whether the employer offers certain health benefits to such employees; and (3) removing the existing provisions for adjusting the minimum wage based on applicable increases in the cost of living. The changes will take effect July 1, 2024 [Nevada Ballot Question No. 2, Amending the Nevada Constitution].

Note: At the time of publication, with 77% of the votes counted, this measure has 54% of voters approving the changes, and 46% voting “no.”

Tennessee

Union contract ballot questions approved. Ballot question #1 proposed a constitutional change prohibiting workplace contracts that require union membership or affiliation as a condition of employment. The measure passed by a margin of 69.7% to 30.3%.

 

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