The editorial “Seattle should reject the head tax on jobs” accurately outlines the economic harm that will be associated with a head tax on employees.
In its draft legislation, the Seattle City Council claims that the prosperity and economic growth of the city “has directly contributed to the rapid increase in the number” of homeless individuals and families. While the causes of homelessness are many, it doesn’t immediately follow that a robust economy and low unemployment are to blame, particularly given that many homeless people are afflicted with substance abuse, mental illness or other disabilities, often in combination.
The city has increased spending recently by more than 50 percent to address this tragic problem. The City Council should review current management before it raises taxes. Perhaps some of the current approaches actually enable homelessness.
If the council thinks that homelessness is a difficult problem during prosperity, it will become even more intractable during an economic downturn, which will likely happen if the city doubles down on anti-business policies and drives companies to seek more hospitable environs elsewhere.
John Prueitt, Seattle