East Bay assemblyman proposes tax on wealthiest Californians to rebound from coronavirus

An East Bay assemblyman is proposing a tax on the wealthiest Californians to help the state recover from the economic downturn.

Rob Bonta's bill, which he announced on Thursday, would apply a .4% tax on individuals who have assets of $30 million or more.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, California shut down many parts of its economic sectors, creating a $54 billion dollar budget deficit in the last and current budget cycles. 

“The California Wealth Tax would add critically needed revenue for California by creating a more equitable tax structure,” Bonta said at a news conference. “Families are hurting right now. COVID-19 has only made matters worse. In times of crisis, all Californians must step up and contribute their fair share. Asking these well-resourced Californians to give a little more to keep our people working and support our most vulnerable is the right thing to do.”

The legislation aims to raise an estimated $7.5 billion for education and other needs.

AB 2088 is co-sponsored by the California Federation of Teachers, SEIU California, and the California Teachers Association.

The legislative session ends on Aug. 31, and Bonta (D-Oakland)  acknowledged the measure likely won't come up before then.