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Media Advisory for Monday, August 24
For Immediate Release
Commit to Equity Caravan in Fresno, CA
**Versión en español incluida**
On the Ground Contact: Estevan Gutierrez, 559.392.1023
CARAVAN URGES ASSEMBLY MEMBER ARAMBULA AND STATE SENATOR HURTADO TO SUPPORT BILLS THAT TAX MEGA-MILLIONAIRES & BILLIONAIRES BEFORE LEGISLATURE ADJOURNS
Revenue needed to invest in California’s recovery before today’s crises become catastrophes.
FRESNO, Calif. – The Commit to Equity coalition is demanding lawmakers vote on new legislation to tax the income and wealth of mega-millionaires and billionaires before the State Legislature adjourns at the end of this month, arguing more tax revenue is needed to invest in California’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, historic unemployment, and enduring racial inequity. With the state’s finances in deficit, cuts to schools, healthcare, and essential community services will be inevitable without new taxes, which will set back California’s recovery and widen racial inequity as the Great Recession of 2008 did.
Frontline workers across multiple cities, including Fresno, will take part in a caravan action calling on Assemblymember Dr. Joaquin Arambula and State Senator Melissa Hurtado to take a stance in support of AB 2088 and AB 1253. Both bills were introduced in the context of growing inequality. During the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 154 billionaires who live in California got over $175 billion richer, and 11 more became billionaires while working families have been struggling.
WHO: Members of the Service Employees International Union Local 521 California Federation of Teachers, California Teachers Association, Central Valley Partnership, and Central Labor Council of Fresno, Madera, Tulare, and Kings Counties.
WHEN: Monday, August 24th, 2020
TIME: 5:15 PM Assemble at meet up location, decorate cars
6:15 PM Caravan Commences
On the ground interviews will be available starting at 5:30 p.m. at meet up location as workers and allies prepare for the caravan start.
Meet up location: Street Parking on Santa Fe Avenue and Kern Street.
CAR ROUTE: See Map.
EVENT VISUALS: Vehicles covered with colorful protest signs, drivers honking along public streets, purple SEIU shirts, colorful streamers on cars.
“With the pandemic lingering on, we can see at a national and local level the increase of death and sickness. But what is happening simultaneously, is the fact that working families are struggling like never before. COVID-19 has paralyzed all of our abilities to earn a decent living. Meanwhile, our elected officials stay silent and remain in lock step with their corporate campaign contributors and shareholders. Then there is us, the 99%, who are forced to watch those uber-wealthy profit off of our families and communities while we suffer. There is no time like this one, to rise up to this incredible challenge, and to be the bold leaders our brothers and sisters deserve, for the sake of our nation and beloved Golden State.” – Ron Emenheiser, SEIU 521 Fresno County Chapter Senior Shop Steward
Background on AB 2088 and AB 1253
AB 2088 (“Wealth Tax”) would apply a 0.4% tax on the net worth of taxpayers holding at least $30 million in net assets, impacting approximately 30,400 people and generating $7.5 billion a year. The tax would apply to all assets and liabilities held by Californians globally, capturing the immense levels of accumulated wealth held by the top 0.1 percent. The formula does not include taxes to real property owned in California.
AB 1253 (“Millionaires Tax”) would impact approximately 70,0000 taxpayers and generate $6.5 billion a year by raising income taxes on households with incomes above $1 million per year in three tiers:
As the Legislature’s session winds down this month, multiple, mutually reinforcing crises have a firm grip on California.
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Service Employees International Union, Local 521 represents 53,000 public- and nonprofit, private-sector workers in California’s central Bay Area region and in the Central Valley. Under a Community First vision, we are committed to making sure the needs of our community, and the vital services we provide our community, come first. We believe our communities thrive when residents, leaders and workers recognize that we are all in this together when it comes to our safety, health, and well-being.