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Silicon Valley cities considering taxes aimed at large employers

The aim is to offset the impact on housing costs and homelessness by tech companies.

May 30, 2018 |
Silicon Valley cities considering taxes aimed at large employers

 Photo: Pixabay


After Seattle’s recent enactment of an employee head count tax to combat an acute housing shortage blamed on the rapid growth of Amazon and other high tech companies, cities in Silicon Valley are moving forward with similar proposals.

Mountain View, home to Alphabet, Intuit Inc., and LinkedIn, has proposed a tax that could cost major local employers between $250 and $300 a head. The city council is expected to vote on the bill next month.

Palo Alto's city council recently voted to send a tax measure to voters in November that would raise levies on hotel rooms and on real estate transactions. The taxes could affect tech businesses buying new offices and visitors doing business with them. The city failed to pass a direct business tax almost a decade ago.

In San Francisco, a coalition of non-profit organizations is spearheading an effort to tax companies 0.5% on earnings of more than $50 million. Seattle will tax large employers $275 per employee for a total expected to be about $50 million.


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