SACRAMENTO—Military retirees and their surviving spouses pensions’ are a step closer to exemption from state taxation after the Senate Military and Veterans Affairs Committee approved the measure Monday on a bipartisan 5-0 vote. Several past attempts at similar legislation have failed to pass the house of origin.
The bill, AB 46, was introduced earlier this year by Assemblymember James C. Ramos (D-San Bernardino who also authored a similar measure last year that did not make it out of the Assembly. “California is the only state to tax the pensions of our military personnel. We need to make the state more veteran friendly and honor the many sacrifices of our armed services personnel and their spouses. We must do better by our military retirees and their families.”
AB 46 tax benefits would begin on or after January 1, 2024, and before January 1, 2034.
Ramos said the tax relief would help keep more armed forces retirees in California. “Military retirees bring benefits to our state such as stability, job skills used in second careers, and federal funding. These men and women served our nation in a variety of valuable capacities, and they and their families have frequently done so at great personal sacrifice. California needs to more fully acknowledge the contributions they make.” He added that between 2000 and 2016, the nation’s population of military retirees declined by 17 percent.
AB 46 is sponsored by the Military Officers Association of America and the California Council of Chapters Affiliated Military Officers Association of America. It is also supported by the San Diego Military Advisory Council, Orange Empire Military Officers Club, California Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States, California State Commanders Veterans Council, the San Diego County Taxpayers Association, and individual chapters of the military officers association.
Assemblymember James C. Ramos proudly represents the 45th Assembly district which includes the Cities of Fontana, Highland, Mentone, Redlands, Rialto and San Bernardino. He is the first and only California Native American serving in the state’s legislature. Ramos chairs the Assembly Committees on Rules.