LA WATCHDOG--We need to send a loud and clear message to Mayor Eric Garcetti, the Herb Wesson led City Council, the County Board of Supervisors, the Los Angeles Community College District, the Los Angeles Unified School District, Governor Jerry Brown, and our representatives in Sacramento that we are not their ATM.
If all the taxes on the November ballot are approved by the voters, our proportionate share will be $1.6 billion. To put this into everyday terms, this amounts to $400 for each of the City’s 4 million residents and over $1,100 for the average family. This increase is also the equivalent of ramping up our sales tax up to 11.7% or increasing our property taxes by 31%.
But that’s not all folks. The political establishment at the City, County, and State levels is cooking up a number of other schemes to pick our pockets that, when added to $1.6 billion, will result in Angelenos being slammed for $3.7 billion, or $925 for each man, woman, and child living in the City of Los Angeles.
$3.7 billion in new taxes would ratchet up our sales tax to 15% or bump our property taxes by over 70%.
NOVEMBER BALLOT MEASURES
- $1.2 Billion--We are being asked by the City to reject or approve a $1.2 billion bond to support supportive housing for the homeless. If approved by two-thirds of the voters, LA property taxes will increase by an average of $66 million a year for the next 30 years.
- $150 Million--This is in addition to the $150 million in new taxes associated with the $1 billion increase in LA’s water and power rates that were approved in the spring by the City Council and the Mayor.
- $860 Million--The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is asking us to reject or approve yet another half cent increase in our sales tax, this time to a staggering 9½%, one of the highest rates in the nation. If approved by two-thirds of the County’s voters, the Angeleno share of the $860 million in new revenue for Metro will be about $350 million a year.
- $95 Million--The County is asking us to reject or accept a parcel tax to fund its parks. If approved by two-thirds of the County’s voters, Los Angeles share of this permanent $95 million tax (subject to increases based on inflation) will result in higher property taxes of $40 million a year.
- $200 Million--The Los Angeles Community College District has placed on the ballot a measure to authorize the issuance of $3.3 billion in bonds. If approved by two-thirds of the voters, LA’s proportionate share of the $200 million property tax increase will be about $150 million.
- $840 Million--The State ballot has Proposition 55, the union sponsored $7 billion extension of the “temporary” soak the rich income tax, and Proposition 56, the $1.4 billion cigarette tax, which, if both are approved by the voters, will tag Angelenos with $840 million in new taxes.
FUTURE TAXES UNDER CONSIDERATION
In 2014, our City was seriously considering a $4.5 billion bond measure to repair our streets and sidewalks. While tabled in July of 2014 because of the Controller’s unfavorable audit of the Department of Street Services, the City Council is waiting for the right time to reintroduce this ballot measure that will cost us $250 million a year in higher property taxes.
The County is expected to place on the ballot a quarter cent increase in our sales tax to fund its services to the homeless. This proposed $350 million tax has the blessing of our flip flopping mayor and will hit us up for about $150 million.
The County, along with the City, is very interested in a $1 billion a year stormwater tax, of which our share for the next 20 years will be $400 million.
And once again we have the State which is considering raising an additional $10 billion by expanding the sales tax to include services and increasing the gas tax by $3 billion to fund the repair of the highways. Our 10% (based on population) share will be $1.3 billion.
The political establishment will try to pick our pockets, one tax at a time, appealing to our sympathies, claiming that the new taxes are vital to support the cause of the day, whether it be the homeless, transportation, streets and highways, education (“It’s for the kids!”), or the environment.
The real issue is that our Enlightened Elite at all levels of government are unwilling to establish budget priorities because of the political pressure from special interest groups, especially from the campaign funding union leaders who are only concerned about higher salaries, improved benefits, and maintaining the unsustainable pensions for their members.
But when Angelenos come to their senses after sifting through all the political propaganda and realize that we are going to be slammed with $1.6 billion in tax increases, they are not going to be happy campers.
Are you able to afford another $400 a year in additional taxes? Is your family able to afford another expense of $1,100 a year? Are you in favor of new taxes that would result in a sales tax of 11.7%? Or how about a 31% increase in your property taxes?
Just say NO on November 8.
(Jack Humphreville writes LA Watchdog for CityWatch. He is the President of the DWP Advocacy Committee and a member of the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council. Humphreville is the publisher of the Recycler Classifieds -- www.recycler.com. He can be reached at: email@example.com.)