TECH COMPAINES “NOT PAYING THEIR FAIR SHARE” FOR LOCAL PROBLEMS, TOO FOCUSED ON OTHER CAUSES IN THEIR PHILANTRHOPY, SAY SAN FRANCISCO POLITICIAN AND ACTIVISTS
Activists in San Francisco, with the backing of at least one member of the city’s Board of Supervisors, are proposing a 1.5% payroll tax that would be applied only to technology companies. The tax would supposedly be used to mitigate the impact that rising housing costs in the city have had on lower-income residents. I have a few questions:
Assuming that the tax is on the employer only, wouldn’t it simply be passed on to all employees, either directly or in the form of lower wages or salaries? Sounds regressive.
What, exactly, is a “technology company?” Why are local issues, such as housing affordability, peculiarly the fault of those companies?
Isn’t housing affordability a function of supply and demand? I’ll bet the city hasn’t done much to lower the cost of constructing affordable housing, like, say, reduce the regulatory burden on builders.
Even if tech companies are to blame for the high cost of housing because they just pay their workers too darn much, is it really a good idea to start targeting extra taxes at the companies that are providing high paying jobs in your city? Is your city really so special that those companies won’t at some point decide that it makes more sense to expand in, or relocate to, localities where their tax burden is lower?
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