Ballot Argument in Favor of Measure E
Copy in the voter handbook for the Nov. 4, 2008 election
We need a tax cut! Prices are rocketing. Utilities are going up. Citizens have to tighten their belts to survive. Well, if citizens must do a round of belt-tightening, so should our government.
City salaries are out of control. In 2006, 16 public employees received compensation over $100,000. In 2007, this number increased dramatically to 39. Further, after 30 years most city employees can retire with 90 percent of their top pay, with inflation adjustments, for life. The more money you pay in taxes, the more they make
As taxpayers, we have little power to reduce federal or state income tax rates. Nor do we have much control over state sales tax rates, the hidden tax of inflation, or property taxes. But we can repeal the 6% Seaside utility tax that, according to former Mayor Lance McClair, was supposed to be temporary.
Utility user taxes are regressive because they take a higher percentage of income from low income families than from high. They also discourage city government from supporting lower rates or free services like wireless Internet.
Passed by the Seaside City Council in 1983, the 6% utility tax has arguably never been voter-approved. Only 31% of California cities have utility taxes. Local voters have already indicated their opposition to taxes on utilities. In November of 2004, Seaside city voters defeated a special statewide utility tax by a 57 to 41 margin.
Beware of scare tactics: vital services will NOT be cut. They are constitutionally protected as the first priority of city government. California State Constitution (article 13, section 35) states that if a municipality has to make budget cuts, the last place must be public health and safety (meaning firemen and policemen).
Repeal the 6% utility tax. Vote YES on E. See list of tax-supported salaries at www.SeasideTaxpayers.org
Aug. 12, 2008
Last Updated: Aug 12, 08
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