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State Taxes

January 8, 1993
California is 35th among the states in tax burden--in the bottom third. Now, with an even greater state budget deficit looming, the governor indicates there will still be no new taxes (Dec. 27). Instead, services will be cut even further. The issue of business climate in California is not merely a tax issue. It also includes how well we maintain services (fire, police, health), infrastructure (roads, water systems, parks, sewers), and education (schools, community colleges, universities)
March 25, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - Proposed legislation aimed at providing more tax credits to attract so-called runaway movie and television productions back to the industry's birthplace in California won initial approval from a legislative committee Tuesday. The proposal would renew and increase a state tax credit - amounting to as much as $400 million a year - to better compete with generous tax subsidies available in more than 40 states, including New York, Louisiana, New York and Michigan, as well as studios in Canada and Britain.
May 24, 1993
Does anyone see the hypocrisy here? Wilson says, "Read my lips: No taxes will be raised to get us out of this mess. But cities and counties, you're on your own; the state taxes you hand over to me will not be distributed back to you. We'll keep all your money here for the state, and for whatever local services you need, raise your own taxes. But I am not responsible for that. (Whew. Now they won't think I raised taxes and they'll think I was a good governor.)" I didn't just fall off the truck, Gov. Wilson; a tax for necessary services is still a tax. If I have to pay more to get those services, I will, as with President Clinton's plan, but at least he's not trying to trick me, by abdicating responsibility!
January 13, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO -- Bernice Tingle, 67, lost her life's savings of over $1 million to a convicted Bay Area Ponzi scheme operator, who's now serving 46 months in federal prison. The retired phone company manager says she now barely gets by on the income she has left. But state tax collectors came after her for $84,000 in taxes on the paper profits that she never got. The debt now is $135,000 with interest and penalty charges. Tingle got some relief from the IRS, thanks to a ruling helping victims of the more infamous Ponzi schemer Bernard L. Madoff.
April 18, 1996
Gov. Pete Wilson proposes a 15% tax cut. A tax cut, when our libraries are being shut down or put on part-time basis. A tax cut, when our before- and after-school activities are being canceled. A tax cut, when our infrastructure is falling down around our ears. A tax cut, for corporations that already pay CEOs megabucks while "downsizing" the rank-and-file employees. A tax cut, while our poor and near-poor are denied health care. A tax cut, while gang control programs are being eliminated.
Q. I am a resident of California but maintain savings and brokerage accounts in the state of Washington, which has no state income tax. Do I have to pay California state taxes on the interest generated in the bank account and the dividends and capital gains I have earned in the brokerage account? -- D.M . * A. Generally speaking, you are covered by the law of the state in which you are a legal resident. The locations of your brokerage or savings accounts are irrelevant.
November 23, 2002
When Elizabeth G. Hill, the Legislature's nonpartisan fiscal advisor, puts headlines like "Huge Problem Looming" in her 2003 fiscal outlook, California's elected officials had better perk up their ears. Hill, a master of understatement, adds that "this year [2003] will be much harder than the last." The 2002 struggle to paste over a $24-billion deficit was the longest and one of the meanest in state history.
An appellate court has dealt California another setback in the high-stakes battle to save its so-called "unitary tax" on foreign-based multinational corporations--a ruling that could cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars. The 3rd District Court of Appeal in Sacramento, deciding in favor of London-based Barclays Bank and its California subsidiary, found that California's unitary system is unconstitutional because it violates the foreign commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.
September 2, 1986
The Page 1 article (Aug. 20), "Efforts Revived to Align State, U.S. Tax Codes," struck a nerve. Why in the world does the state of California persist in its ridiculous taxing system? Why not just bill a percentage amount of the federal tax? It would vary among individuals, but in averaging the past 10 years, my state tax amount has been about 8.5% of my federal tax. Why, then, could one not merely send a photocopy of those federal tax return pages showing the amount paid along with a check in a predetermined amount?
August 11, 1989
Taxpayers paid 7% more in state taxes in fiscal 1988 than they did in the previous year, the government reported. The Commerce Department reported that state tax revenues totaled $264 billion in the year ending June 30, 1988, compared to $246 billion in the previous fiscal year. California had the largest total state tax revenue, $36 billion, up 6% from the previous year. California taxes averaged $1,281 per capita, slightly over the national average of $1,077.
January 10, 2014 | By Timothy M. Phelps
Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said Friday that the federal government would recognize hundreds of same-sex marriages that took place in Utah over the past three weeks, two days after Utah announced it did not consider the marriages to be legal. Holder's announcement left some 1,300 couples who rushed to marry after a federal District Court ruling on Dec. 20 in complicated legal limbo, with their marriages deemed valid for federal tax purposes but not for state taxes. “I am confirming today that, for purposes of federal law, these marriages will be recognized as lawful and considered eligible for all relevant federal benefits on the same terms as other same-sex marriages,” Holder said in a videotaped statement.
December 26, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
ATLANTA - Ric Reitz makes movies. He helped bankroll the Matt Damon thriller "Contagion," Clint Eastwood's "Trouble With the Curve" and the Robert Downey comedy "Due Date. " Reitz, an energetic 58-year-old, doesn't hang out at the Polo Lounge, red-carpet premieres or swank offices in Century City. Instead, he works out of a former cotton mill near Martin Luther King Jr.'s boyhood home, hustling for business at Chamber of Commerce dinners and Rotary Club lunches. Recently, he was looking forward to attending a meeting of prosperous chicken farmers.
December 22, 2013 | By Teresa Watanabe
After several lean years, thousands of California teachers are winning pay hikes, bonuses and other benefits in contract negotiations - the fruits of voter-approved school funding increases. The $6.1 billion in new funds headed for schools this year courtesy of Proposition 30, a temporary income and sales tax increase, also will allow officials to rescind layoffs and restore days to the school calendar in districts from Napa to Long Beach. "On the whole, teachers are happier," said Eric Heins, vice president of the California Teachers Assn.
December 19, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO -- A state panel has granted a $34.7-million tax break to Tesla Motors Inc., which makes high-tech electric vehicles at facilities in Fremont and Palo Alto. The California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority this week approved the credit on sales and use taxes that Tesla would have paid for equipment to expand its production of electric cars and power trains. Photos: The world's most beautiful cars  "I'm pleased we could take this action to encourage Tesla to expand its electric vehicle production in California, which will create green jobs and improve our air quality," said state Treasurer Bill Lockyer, who chairs the agency's board.
December 10, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO -- California's tax revenue came in about 6% below forecasts in November, but state Controller John Chiang dismissed the drop as a fluke of the calendar. Last month's total of $6 billion was $375.6 million under estimates, Chiang said. But, revenue for the first five months of the fiscal year was $31.4 billion, ahead of budget predictions by $228.1 million. QUIZ: How much do you know about California's economy? Meanwhile, state spending since the July 1 start of the fiscal year was down $126.3 million from budget assumptions.
November 6, 2013 | By W.J. Hennigan
A wide-ranging multibillion-dollar package of incentives comes before Washington state lawmakers Thursday as the state scrambles to ensure that aerospace giant Boeing Co. will build its next major jetliner in the Seattle area. The company's Long Beach plant, which is now set for closure in 2015, had been rumored as a long-shot site for the work. But Tuesday, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee called the Legislature into a special session that begins Thursday to pass a package of bills that includes more than $8 billion in tax savings for Boeing to build the next-generation version of the 777 wide-body jet in Puget Sound.
July 28, 1988
In one of the largest state tax-evasion cases to reach court in the Los Angeles area, the owner of two Long Beach restaurants pleaded no contest last week to a charge that he failed to pay $400,000 owed to the Franchise Tax Board. Jimmy Contos, owner of the Golden Star restaurants on Pacific Coast Highway and on Carson Street, was accused of underpaying his state taxes for 1983 and 1984, tax board spokesman Jim Reber said.
October 9, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
A group of entertainment industry executives and labor leaders called on state lawmakers to beef up California's film incentives -- or risk losing a homegrown industry to rivals. At a state committee hearing held at SAG-AFTRA headquarters in Los Angeles, industry officials praised California's film and TV tax incentives, which were adopted in 2009 to stop the migration of film and TV work.  They cited the Oscar-winning film "Argo" and the TV series "Teen Wolf" as examples of projects that have been filmed in California specifically because of the tax credits they received.
June 5, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
The hit series "Teen Wolf" is a top-ranked cable show among young viewers. It also ranks at the top of the list when it comes to receiving California film tax breaks. On Tuesday, the MTV series was approved for an estimated $11-million tax credit for its fourth season -- by far the highest among 31 projects that won a piece of the $100 million the state awards annually to film and TV projects, state records reviewed by the Los Angeles Times show. TV shows are eligible to receive a tax credit equivalent to 20% of qualified production costs.
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