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Delaware's income tax brackets could change under proposed legislation

Joe Irizarry
Delaware Public Media

One lawmaker’s push to change Delaware’s tax brackets may be gaining some traction.

Delaware’s current taxable income brackets only go as high as $60,000, which State Rep. John Kowalko (D-Newark South) says is too low compared to other states.

His proposal would add new brackets at $125,000, $250,000 and $500,000 of taxable income. 

“It’s to ensure stability, it’s to ensure a little more equitable, certainly to ensure a more fair collection of necessary revenue,” Kowalko said.

With no sales taxes and relatively low property taxes, the state relies on income taxes for much of its revenue.

Kowalko says the new brackets are meant to be a long term solution to the budget.

“This is not intended to be a specific silver bullet, magic bullet to fill a necessary revenue shortfall,” said Kowalko.

Kowalko says the new brackets would help to stabilize Delaware’s income revenue into the future and ensure those making more money are paying their fair share.

He’s been trying to pass some version of this legislation for at least 10 years, but has met opposition by others in the Democratic party.

This year, with the State Senate President Pro Temp Dave Sokola (D-Newark) as a sponsor and a more progessive caucus, Kowalko is confident the bill can passed.

Roman Battaglia grew up in Portland, Ore, and now reports for Delaware Public Media as a Report For America corps member. He focuses on politics, elections and legislation activity at the local, county and state levels.
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