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Keller @ Large: Federal Tax Changes Could Have Huge Impact In Massachusetts

BOSTON (CBS) – I hate to spoil your mood this morning, but tax filing deadline day is just 11 days away. And if you think doing your taxes is a pain in the wallet now, just wait until next year.

Last time I checked, taxation analysts were predicting that the recent federal changes capping the amount you can deduct from your state and local taxes will cost a third of Massachusetts taxpayers more than $7 billion in new tax payments.

Add in the proposed ballot question that would slap an income surtax on incomes of over a million and some of our wealthier citizens could see their income tax rate triple.

Who cares, right? They're wealthy, they can afford it. Maybe so, but they can also decide - as many have over the years - that they will take their incomes and businesses elsewhere, to states with lower tax rates. That potentially means less tax revenue and fewer jobs.

Meanwhile, there may also be a ballot question slashing the sales tax, and that's not the only way backlash against taxes might manifest itself.

You can bet the casino operators will come begging for tax relief if their revenues don't meet projections.

And the legal marijuana industry will likely be right behind them.

For my entire life as a reporter here, taxes have been one of the most polarizing issues we face, the state's progressive, big-government impulses clashing with the reality of how expensive it is to live here.

We'll be talking about all this on Sunday morning at 8:30 a.m. when I sit down with the chairman of the house taxation committee, and I hope you tune in. Because this hot-button set of issues is about to get a whole lot hotter.

Share your thoughts with me via email at, or use Twitter, @kelleratlarge.

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