Following a Seattle City Council committee's approval of a $75-million-per-year tax on large employers Friday, supporters of the controversial proposal gathered Saturday, marking the latest demonstration surrounding the so-called head tax in recent days.
Following a Seattle City Council committee’s approval of a $75-million-per-year tax on large employers Friday, supporters of the controversial proposal marched from Capitol Hill to the Amazon Spheres on Saturday, marking the latest in a series of demonstrations.
The so-called head tax would apply to employers grossing at least $20 million a year, such as Amazon, and generate money for homelessness services and affordable housing.
Demonstrators Saturday cheered for messages against capitalism and Amazon — including from City Councilmember Kshama Sawant, who organized the event — and waved signs with phrases such as “Tax the rich, house the homeless.”
Some chanted “No Bezos-Durkan deal,” referring to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. A few wore T-shirts supporting the Socialist Alternative Party, which includes Sawant as a member.
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Besides Sawant, Councilmembers Lisa Herbold, M. Lorena González, Mike O’Brien and Teresa Mosqueda support the $75-million-per-year plan, which equates to about $500 per employee.
Mayor Jenny Durkan had proposed a smaller tax package Thursday night, hoping to gain support from company leaders and construction unions opposed to the larger tax. A split council rejected that idea Friday.
The full council could vote as early as Monday.
A new law needs five votes to pass and six to override a veto from Durkan. The mayor has signaled she would veto the current proposal.