How the pandemic is affecting states unequally


Of the characteristics of this virus economy as we have said on this program. I cannot tell you how many times is how uneven its effects have been on people black and brown and low income. Americans do in way worse in health and jobs and just getting by than whiter and wealthier populations are uncomfortable. As to how they're doing depends on what industry they're in and on states some of which have been really hit by this pandemic less revenue from income and sales taxes and higher virus expenses and some of which states that is doing all right so as the senate takes up. President biden's relief bill this week. And it's three hundred and fifty billion dollars in aid to state and local governments marketplace's mitchell hartman starts us off with a tale of several states. The pandemic recession has delta significant blow to tax collections. State revenues were down by nearly two percent from december. Last year overall. All but according to the urban brookings tax policy center tax revenues actually increased in twenty two states. This disparity has a lot to do with the mix of jobs in layoffs in a state. Says carl davis at the institute on taxation and economic policy so many lower income people have been laid off higher income. People have been much more likely to keep their jobs so tax. Revenues are down by double digits in states with lots of low-wage tourism jobs in hotels bars and restaurants florida and but states with more jobs that can be done from home at higher wages. Like in high tech and professional services are faring better. Washington's one example thinks in part to folks like darby megan of spokane he's a manager for tech startup. his wife's an accountant for an architecture firm. They're both working from home. We've maintained our salaries and that's been huge blessing. Haven't had to take a step back hours or anything. Like that with the stimulus checks. That was a nice little bonus. The couple owns a home. That's gone up in value. So they're paying more property tax but they've improved their overall balance sheet. We've been able to save significantly more right. We're not eating out as much and they made one really big purchase. A new van built into an rv. So we've sort of taken some of our vacation money that you budget and instead may domestic vacation mobile now not every high earner has come through the pandemic recession unscathed. Fiona greek at the g. P. morgan chase institute has been tracking household checking balances. There are some high income families that have seen cuts in their income cuts in their salaries but most of seeing their bank balances and assets grow and she says one reason is the booming stock market the broader trend. There's the growth and wealth. We see a lot of families transferring money into brokerage accounts to take advantage of those games but some states are missing out on taxing. Those income gains at the top. Says carl davis at the institute on taxation and economic policy. He points to nevada heavily dependent on tourism dollars revenue down about twelve percent where there is no broad based income tax. You're leaning a lot on sales taxes. Regressive taxes in general. Your revenues aren't going to do quite as well as progressive taxes at a time. Like this of just soaring income inequality contrast that with california that's opted for a more progressive mix leaning a bit more on the income tax most states do with higher top income tax rates on top earners. Especially that's staring a whole lot. Better with revenues up around two percent since the pandemic started. That's helped a good bit by silicon valley which attracted v and his family from texas. So i'm a software engineer. I was in iran for about four and a half years. And then during the pandemic My wife connor fulltime opportunity and bay area so we moved. He says silicon valley employers are hiring. Like there's no tomorrow. There were plenty of opportunities in the to offers in my hand. Some states are now considering hiking taxes on top earners to boost revenues and fund recovery from the pandemic including new york. Minnesota connecticut rhode island and

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