Massachusetts Statehouse (copy) (copy)

Advocates for a surtax on the wealthy are launching their campaign for the measure leading up to next week's Constitutional Convention at the Massachusetts Statehouse in Boston. 

The coalition backing an income surtax on high earners in Massachusetts plans to launch its campaign this week to pass its measure on the 2022 ballot.

The Raise Up Massachusetts coalition on Wednesday also plans to release new public opinion polling on the proposed constitutional amendment, which tacks a 4 percent surtax on annual household incomes exceeding $1 million.

The surtax needs a favorable vote from lawmakers meeting in a Constitutional Convention to reach the ballot, and it comes as the Biden administration also is pushing for new taxes on the wealthiest Americans to support its far-reaching domestic spending agenda.

Supporters of the income surtax say it would raise $2 billion a year that would be dedicated exclusively to education and transportation spending, and force the wealthiest taxpayers to pay their "fair share" of taxes.

Opponents say it would drive wealth and capital out of Massachusetts, and the debate on the plan this year comes as the federal government showers states with economic stimulus and COVID-19 relief money and with state tax collections on a steady ascent.

A virtual news conference is planned for 11 a.m. Wednesday, and it will come a week before the Constitutional Convention gets underway May 12. The measure was advanced on a 147-48 vote during the Constitutional Convention last session.