For the first time in his career, state Rep. Adam Scanlon (D-North Attleborough) addressed the House of Representatives on April 13.
Scanlon rose to speak in support of a $1.1 billion tax relief bill proposed by House leadership. The bill, known as H3770, would boost tax breaks for seniors, renters and families. It also changes the state’s tax code for estate and capital gains taxes. In his speech, Scanlon said the bill would help his constituents who are feeling burdened by price increases caused by inflation.
“We’ve been hearing from people all over my district about the cost of housing,” Scanlon said. “Many single mothers and fathers who rent are hanging on by a thread, childcare costs are out of control, seniors can’t afford to buy their medication, and children won’t be able to inherit the home where they grew up.”
Scanlon said the relief package would help the middle class make ends meet. He said the expansion of the Senior Circuit Breaker helps older residents pay utility bills.
“This proposal will double the senior circuit breaker,” he said. “There has never been a more pressing time to take care of people in their golden years.”
Scanlon also touted the refundable $600 Child Tax Credit for all dependents per household–a policy Gov. Maura Healey supports.
“We are all hearing the high prices of childcare,” Scanlon said. “This bill speaks directly to the families in my district that are feeling the brunt of it.”
A provision in the tax package criticized by advocacy groups is the raising of the estate tax threshold from $1 million to $2 million. Act On Mass, a nonprofit organization focused on government transparency, argued it provides wealthy residents a larger tax break. Scanlon defended the provision and said it allows his constituents to continue living in their childhood homes.
“I have heard from many in my district to update the estate tax by raising the threshold and eliminating the cliff,” he said. “This bill tells our residents we can and will do more. Let’s get this relief right back to the people and start putting dollars right back into people’s pockets.”
Scanlon was then given a round of applause for his inaugural speech—a long-standing tradition on Beacon Hill.
The bill was approved by a vote of 150-3 and sent to the Senate.