LA Chamber Wimps Out on Measure S
The Chamber - which wants so bad to hobnod with the Mayor, other elected officials and the developers and unions who feed them - probably knew it also could no longer remain to be seen as a legitimate protector of it's members' interests if it were to go all the way with the Mayor on this patently deceptive measure. Therefore, they have declared themselves:
NEUTRAL on Measure S
Measure S is the city of Los Angeles’ proposed 9 percent communications user tax which will apply to landline and cell phones as well as Voice over Internet Protocol communications. The city currently has a 10 percent communications user tax on telephone services, which generates $270 million per year and has been challenged in court because it was enacted administratively rather than through a vote of the people.
City Hall declared a “state of fiscal emergency” to lower the voter approval threshold
from two-thirds to 55 percent. The tax rate was reduced from 10 percent to 9
percent but the new tax would apply to a broader range of communications than
the current tax.
City Hall is correct to be concerned about the potential loss of $270 million. And taxpayers are correct to be concerned about the lack of public discussion about the current state of fiscal affairs and options moving forward.
The Chamber would also be correct if they were concerned about the tremendous waste of public funds and that - as noted by Daily News Editor Ron Kaye - "Every year, LA's general fund revenues grow at an average rate of 5.7%. The problem is that since 2000 Los Angeles' employee costs have risen 7.5% a year, a 53% increase."
Therefore there is no need to be concerned about taxpayers keeping an extra $270 million in their pocket, that is unless you're an elected official who needs to keep feeding the beast.