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Capps Votes to Extend Tax Relief for Middle Class

Rates would revert to 1990s levels on income in excess of $250,000

Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, voted Thursday to permanently extend income tax relief for the middle class — individuals making up to $200,000 a year and families making up to $250,000 a year.

Extending current income tax rates will save the average middle-class family on the Central Coast $1,000 a year. The wealthiest 3 percent of Americans will continue to be taxed at a reduced rate on either the first $200,000 or $250,000 of income. Income in excess of $250,000 will be taxed at 1990s income tax levels. Not extending the tax cuts under President George W. Bush to income earned in excess of either $200,000 or $250,000 will reduce the deficit by $700 billion.

The legislation passed by a vote of 234-188. Only three Republicans voted in favor of middle-class tax relief.

“Strengthening the economy and reducing the debt are two of my top priorities, and a vote for permanent middle-class tax relief is a vote to strengthen the economy and reduce the debt,” Capps said. “Middle-class families are still struggling ... and putting extra money in their pockets will boost the economy. In contrast, economists are in near unanimous agreement that giving millionaires and billionaires tax cuts is going to do little to jump-start economic growth. Additionally, 97 percent of small businesses will receive a full extension of their tax cuts.”

According to census data, in California’s 23rd Congressional District, only 5 percent of households earn more than $200,000 annually. At least 95 percent of households in California’s 23rd District will receive a tax break on their entire income. (Data does not include the number of households that earn $200,000 to $250,000 a year).

— Ashley Schapitl is press secretary for Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara.

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