Local group pushes pro-tax, anti-war ballot question

Jamaica Plain-based Mass Alliance of HUD Tenants is part of an effort to place a non-binding referendum on the ballot for the November election. The referendum urges the U.S. Congress to tax the rich, prevent budget cuts, end the Afghanistan war and invest in jobs.

“The idea is to send a message,” said Michael Kane, executive director of the Mass Alliance. “We are just starting, but it is very exciting because already a lot people are trying to get involved.”

Mass Alliance is working with several groups, including the American Friends Service Committee, Right to the City/Civic Action Alliance and the American Federation of Government Eomployees/Local 3258, to place the referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot in the state’s Senate and House districts. Kane said they need to acquire 200 signatures for the House district and 1,200 for the Senate districts.

Kane said the hope is to get the referendum on the ballot in a total of seven out of the eight Senate districts in Greater Boston and about 15 to 20 House districts statewide.

About 250 signatures have been collected in local state Sen. Sonia Chang-Díaz’s district, mostly at the “Wake Up the Earth” festival, said Kane. Chang-Díaz represents Jamaica Plain.

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