Paul L. Caron
Dean


Monday, July 15, 2019

The Taxes Of San Francisco: Bay Area In Vanguard Of Tax Increase Movement

Bloomberg Tax, The More, the Better: San Francisco Leads New Kind of Tax Revolt:

StreetsSan Francisco is emerging as one of the most receptive places in the country for new taxes.

In recent weeks: 

  • San Francisco leaders supported the proposed overhaul of the city’s gross receipts tax structure, which would be the fourth tax-raising proposal on the city’s November ballot.
  • A San Francisco Superior Court judge upheld an initiative raising commercial lease taxes to fund early childhood education and upheld a Salesforce.com-backed initiative imposing gross receipts taxes on companies earning more than $50 million to support homeless services.
  • A pair of recent court rulings upheld locally passed tax initiatives—including one backing the city’s authority to seek taxes from drivers who use paid parking lots at state universities—which could embolden tax enthusiasts in San Francisco even more.

“I think SF is going to be the poster child, one way or another, for aggressively looking for money from business,” Joseph Bankman, Stanford University professor of law and business, said. ...

San Francisco is emerging as one of the most receptive places in the country for new taxes. In recent weeks: 

  • San Francisco leaders supported the proposed overhaul of the city’s gross receipts tax structure, which would be the fourth tax-raising proposal on the city’s November ballot.
  • A San Francisco Superior Court judge upheld an initiative raising commercial lease taxes to fund early childhood education and upheld a Salesforce.com-backed initiative imposing gross receipts taxes on companies earning more than $50 million to support homeless services.
  • A pair of recent court rulings upheld locally passed tax initiatives—including one backing the city’s authority to seek taxes from drivers who use paid parking lots at state universities—which could embolden tax enthusiasts in San Francisco even more.

“I think SF is going to be the poster child, one way or another, for aggressively looking for money from business,” Joseph Bankman, Stanford University professor of law and business, said. ...

San Francisco’s push for new taxes may be replicated by other local governments.

“Locals are always eager for new revenues for many reasons that can lead to desperate measures such as trying to enact new taxes that often are not well designed. Locals face challenges of an eroding sales tax base in California. As we move to more services and digital goods, and less tangible personal property, locals see reduced sales tax collection,” said Annette Nellen, director of San Jose State University’s master of taxation program.

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2019/07/the-taxes-of-san-francisco-bay-area-in-vanguard-of-tax-increase-movement.html

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Comments

San Francisco has the worst inequality in the country. There is a squad that has to clean poop off the streets because people cannot afford housing. But it has time to lecture us on "progressivity.”

Posted by: Mike Livingston | Jul 15, 2019 9:15:49 PM

This will make for an interesting experiment. I seem to recall Silicon Valley is right over the hill from the city limits of San Francisco.

Posted by: Dale Spradling | Jul 16, 2019 5:07:08 AM

I can speak from occasional experience, but between the City's sales tax and universal health care tax, there's a 25% cost when eating out, above the food itself.

When did progressives get so literally regressive?

Posted by: MM | Jul 17, 2019 9:37:20 PM