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Mass. Gov. Urges Lawmakers to Okay Tax Hike


BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Deval Patrick is urging lawmakers to adopt his proposal to raise taxes by nearly $2 billion dollars to pay for improvements in education and transportation.

Patrick testified at a public hearing Friday that the money is needed to ensure the state’s economic prosperity, in part by giving students access to early education and affordable college.

Patrick’s proposal would hike the state income tax from 5.25 percent to 6.25 percent, while lowering the sales tax from 6.25 to 4.5 percent.

Patrick said simply raising the state gas tax by a modest amount wouldn’t bring in enough dollars to create what he called a 21st century transportation system while also paying for his education plan.

On Wednesday, House Speaker Robert DeLeo called for a much smaller tax package, saying he wants to address needs while avoiding economic damage.

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