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SKCR Helps Kill 3 of 4 Seattle Tax Proposals

January 31, 2024

The outgoing Seattle City Council did not go quietly. They considered several new or increased taxes as part of the 2023 budget process. SKCR urged the council to evaluate current spending, use all available revenues, prioritize spending, and generate economic activity before considering any new revenues. We noted that no new revenues were needed to balance the 2024 budget and that it’s not this council’s job to address projected deficits after their terms end. Further, we noted that increased taxes, particularly on businesses, will harm business growth and retention at a time in which our downtown continues to struggle.

Council debated the following proposals:

  • Increase in the rate of the Payroll Expense Tax.
  • City capital gains tax of 3% (on top of the state’s 7% tax);
  • Transportation Impact Fee;
  • High CEO pay ratio tax (tax that applies to companies with large gap between CEO pay and median worker salary.

All but a 6% increase to the Payroll Expense Tax were defeated.

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