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Santa Clara County supervisors propose sales tax to fill $250M deficit

Original post made on Jul 24, 2020

The board of supervisors is looking into a sales tax measure to patch up a massive hole in the county's budget during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it may not have enough support to reach the ballot.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, July 24, 2020, 8:38 AM

Comments (20)

1 person likes this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 24, 2020 at 8:44 am

Or, split roll.


30 people like this
Posted by Dan
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 24, 2020 at 8:52 am

Voting no on tax increases of any kind. How much is enough? Every time an "emergency" tax increase has been passed , it NEVER gets sunset.


32 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 24, 2020 at 9:01 am

A *brilliant* idea. Not. Let's add another regressive tax to the tax burden of people of below-average means?

NO. Let's not do that.

If the county government needs more money, let's tax people who have all the money.


27 people like this
Posted by TaxMan
a resident of Palo Alto Orchards
on Jul 24, 2020 at 10:23 am

While the Santa Clara County is at it, why don't you just pass a gross receipts tax (1%) on gross sales of Tesla, Intel, Apple and the other tech firms. Any firm with less than $10 million gross is exempted. The businesses can pay it. And companies and their shareholders feel it's unfair, the door is over there.

And what would happen? They leave Santa Clara County (maybe to Stockton, Imperial Valley, or Sacramento with the jobs. . ) then congestion on the freeway and housing issues disappear. Housing prices stablizes.
Viola! Problem fixed.

HAHAHAH. .. maybe common sense could prevail!


27 people like this
Posted by rsmithjr
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jul 24, 2020 at 10:24 am

Huge tax revenues of recent years just brought us huge increases in the budget.


20 people like this
Posted by Pacsailor
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 24, 2020 at 11:01 am

These guys must be out of their minds, why would anyone with common sense add a tax during these uncertain times, when there is high unemployment and lots of businesses that are closed.


6 people like this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Jul 24, 2020 at 11:06 am

Why not take advantage of the federal bailout? What county is proposing a tax increase of that magnitude at this time? This is a federal problem.


21 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 24, 2020 at 11:31 am

Exactly the same as the City of Palo Alto. Too many administrators and not enough common sense.

We can't pay more City taxes, we can't pay more County taxes when they are running amuck with our money. So many people out of work. So many people depending on food banks to get food. So many people who are struggling to run a business or working on reduced hours. There is no way that the economy can return to normal this way and increased taxes will only hurt those who are already struggling.

Instead get rid of some of the administrators and get the economy going so that people can earn money and spend money. Start acting like a household and get rid of the fluff.


19 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jul 24, 2020 at 5:15 pm

BART just passed an across-board 2.75% salary INCREASE last week, while ridership is down 88%. Can you believe that?

Greedy governments and agencies are much, much worse than greedy corporations.


15 people like this
Posted by Jack
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 24, 2020 at 7:28 pm

Sales taxes are highly regressive. It hurts the people who are hurting the most from this lockdown.


4 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jul 24, 2020 at 11:51 pm

Just don't close my precious sales-tax loophole, the exemption of groceries.


7 people like this
Posted by Juana Q Public
a resident of another community
on Jul 28, 2020 at 1:04 pm

Other news outlets are covering the heavy lobbying by the county-contracted nonprofits to Supervisor Chavez and the Board of Supervisors to get this tax increase on the ballot.

Are these the same nonprofits that are awarded millions of tax dollars in county contracts with informal or non-competitive processes?

Are these the same nonprofits who get paid millions of tax dollars in spite of often not meeting the performance measures set forth in their under-managed contracts?

Before we vote to increase our taxes to keep these nonprofits afloat, a Grand Jury Investigation should answer these questions.


8 people like this
Posted by merry
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Jul 28, 2020 at 1:31 pm

No new taxes! None!


4 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 28, 2020 at 2:20 pm

Posted by merry, a resident of Palo Alto Hills

>> No new taxes! None!

I disagree. If we could figure out how to tax the super-rich monopolists around here, I would vote for it. Sales tax is the opposite-- it disproportionately taxes the poor and lower middle class. No to higher sales tax. Good luck taxing the super-rich. Ever since Reagan, it has gotten ever more difficult.


2 people like this
Posted by Helen
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 28, 2020 at 2:43 pm

I’ve been expecting this.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:18 am

80% of taxes are paid by 20% of the people. Or is it 90% by 10%? Or 95% by 5%?


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:42 pm

Posted by musical, a resident of Palo Verde

>> 80% of taxes are paid by 20% of the people. Or is it 90% by 10%? Or 95% by 5%?

Two things. First, don't confuse "taxes" with "federal income taxes". There are (misleading) charts like this one with titles like "Half of taxpayers pay 97% of all income taxes: Web Link OR Web Link

There are charts like the one near the top of this page, showing that state and local tax burden is, on average, just the opposite: the fraction of income paid in state and local taxes is highest for the poor and lowest for the rich:

Web Link

It is difficult to add it all up, but, clearly, the tax burden on the rich relative to the poor changed drastically before/after Reagan:

Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by Not me
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jul 29, 2020 at 10:34 pm

@Anon who says, "I disagree. If we could figure out how to tax the super-rich monopolists around here, I would vote for it."

In other words "as long as you don't tax me I'm all for it."

For those supporting Prop 15, what are the chances that of it passes, the state/county/school districts will lower other taxes or assessments?
My guess is zero.


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 30, 2020 at 12:06 pm

Posted by Not me, a resident of Evergreen Park

>> @Anon who says, "I disagree. If we could figure out how to tax the super-rich monopolists around here, I would vote for it."

>> In other words "as long as you don't tax me I'm all for it."

Please read what I wrote again. I didn't say anything whatsoever about my own income or wealth or what taxes I might or might not pay.

The TLDR is, "As long as you don't tax the poor and lower middle class, I'm all for it."

I don't suppose you read any of the links I posted showing the decline in taxes paid by the rich, and, the surprising, to some people, fraction of income the poor pay in taxes?


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jul 30, 2020 at 6:11 pm

@Anon, that itep.org link confirms California tops all other states in taxing the rich vs poor.


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