One week after passing a head tax on major businesses located in Seattle, including Amazon, Microsoft and Starbucks, the Seattle City Council is now considering an enormous property tax on the people who work at those businesses. According to Q13 FOX, King County homeowners already saw a bump of 17% in their property taxes in 2017, but City Council members want property taxes increased even more:
Council members Lorena Gonzalez and Rob Johnson are sponsoring the measure, which states the council wants to lift the limit on regular property taxes in order to levy additional taxes. … In 2014, Seattle voters approved a $58 million levy allowing low-income kids to go to preschool for free. Since 2015, the city says the program has allowed affordable or free preschool to 850 families. Now the city wants to send hundreds more to preschool. Mayor Jenny Durkan’s Office is also pushing to send high school graduates to community college for free.
The property tax would amount to, on average, more than another $250 per year for homeowners.
The homelessness problem in Seattle has continued to snowball (as John Stossel and Maxim Lott point out at Reason.com, Seattle’s building code is 745 pages, and the residential building code is another 685 pages); the Seattle City Council has focused far more on “road diets” — narrowing roads via bike lanes — than on the quality of traffic; King County has spent billions on useless light rail. But now they want to bust homeowners’ wallets again — after instituting a $15 minimum wage and a head tax.
This is how Leftist governance destroys thriving major cities. First, you create building codes. That raises rents. Then you increase minimum wage to compensate. That drives out small businesses. Then you tax the big businesses to compensate. So they leave. Then you tax homeowners to compensate. So they leave. Eventually, bad governance based on good intentions crushes growth. But so long as members of the Seattle City Council feel good about themselves, that’s what truly matters.