Department of Revenue officials grilled on capital gains tax rulemaking

Jul 20, 2023
Written by WR Communications

Logan Washburn | The Center Square

When the Washington State Department of Revenue heard public comment on the state’s new capital gains tax, officials took several questions and offered few answers.

“The purpose of this public meeting is to gather feedback on the draft language,” said Michael Hwang, WSDOR tax policy specialist.

The department held the virtual meeting on July 12 to collect public comment on administrative rulemaking for the state’s new capital gains tax.

The meeting drew more than 160 attendees, including representatives from the City of Seattle, H&R Block, Bloomberg Tax, the Washington Retail Association, the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, and the Washington Society of CPAs.

The state Legislature passed the new capital gains tax in 2021, which sets a 7% tax on profits of more than $250,000 from selling some assets like stocks and bonds.

The Washington State Supreme Court upheld the new tax in March, which faced legal challenges under the state constitution’s clause barring different rates of income taxation.

Bea Nahon with WSCPA said the department should clarify capital loss carryovers and revisit how the capital gains tax will be applied.

“You have some sections there that you provided some examples, but you didn’t provide the answers, and you’re asking for feedback,” she said. “We believe that the answer there is in plain sight.”

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