In 2018, Seattle will spend more than $5 billion. That’s $2 billion more than 10 years ago. Yet our roads, traffic, homelessness and basic city services have become worse.
Some on the City Council say evil tech companies are to blame. This is not only illogical — it’s profoundly disingenuous.
Most of the extra $2 billion comes from taxes and fees generated by tech companies creating jobs and from the generosity of residents who voted for higher individual taxes.
Yet the same leaders who have mismanaged our city for years are now demanding that our businesses shell out more money in the form of a $500 per employee head tax — as if merely raising another $75 million were a solution.
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The city already spends that amount per year on homelessness, and we have little to show for it. It’s embarrassing.
All companies, including tech, want to help the homeless. Asking them to bear an extra $500 per employee to fund epic mismanagement is out of touch, misguided and, frankly, an excellent reason for city residents to elect new representatives in 2019.
We need council members focused on outcomes, not rhetoric.
Michael Schutzler, Seattle, CEO of the Washington Technology Industry Association