Seattle Councilmember Mosqueda proposes competing big business tax

Jun 16, 2020, 12:22 PM

Teresa Mosqueda, big business tax...

Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda. (Seattle City Council)

(Seattle City Council)

Seattle City Council now has a second big business tax to consider, after Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda unveiled a new proposal on Tuesday.

Sawant: Amazon tax ‘only thing’ that can rescue Seattle economy

The proposal — first reported by Crosscut — would raise over $200 million a year by levying a tax on corporations with payrolls over $7 million. Qualifying businesses would be taxed 0.7% for every employee making over $150,000, and 1.4% for employees making over $500,000.

Those rates would increase to 1.4% and 2.1% respectively for businesses with payrolls over $1 billion.

Mosqueda’s proposal would borrow from the city’s emergency and general funds in the near term, and then pay that back when the tax begins to collect money in 2022.

In the short term, it would direct spending toward addressing an estimated $550 million budget shortfall brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, as well as a series of relief programs.

After that, money from the measure would go back into affordable housing, “equitable development,” and supporting local businesses. It’s estimated that roughly 97% of businesses in Seattle would be exempted from the tax — including grocery stores and government entities — although the exact number of affected companies has yet to be specified.

Mosqueda touts a “broad coalition” composed of hundreds of local businesses and organizations she consulted while crafting her proposal.

Seattle councilmembers join calls to defund police department

“Organizations and individuals across Seattle have all underscored the same points: Our community is hurting. Our economy is tanking. We cannot wait for the state or feds. We have to act now to help Seattle,” she said Tuesday.

Mosqueda’s proposal operates as a competing measure to one from Councilmembers Kshama Sawant and Tammy Morales, whose own proposed big business tax would raise upwards of $500 million a year.

MyNorthwest News

Photo: A deputy's body camera captured a runaway wallaby in Parkland....

Julia Dallas

Runaway wallaby hops out of arms reach of deputies in Parkland

 A wallaby was caught on camera running around Parkland Sunday morning. Pierce County deputies and WSP responded.

47 minutes ago

seattle sex trafficking...

Frank Sumrall

Seattle resident arrested for sex trafficking in San José

A San José special operations unit arrested a Seattle resident last week on suspicion of alleged commercial sex trafficking.

5 hours ago

5-car crash sr 900...

Frank Sumrall

Mustang causes 5-car crash on SR 900 after veering onto oncoming traffic

A 5-car crash on State Route 900 (SR 900) in Renton Sunday led to four injured individuals, a five-hour highway backup and a brush fire.

7 hours ago

Photo: Neighbors in Mount Vernon are being praised for saving young kids from a burning home....

Samantha Lomibao, KIRO 7

Neighbors in Mount Vernon save young kids home alone from burning house

Neighbors in Mount Vernon are being praised for saving young kids from a burning home. The fire sparked on June 3.

20 hours ago

Photo: Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded by U.S. Secret...

Julie Carr Smyth, Jill Colvin, Colleen Long, Michael Balsamo, Eric Tucker and Michelle L. Price, The Associated Press

Trump heads to convention as authorities investigate motive, security in assassination attempt

Trump called for unity and resilience after an attempt on his life added fresh uncertainty to an already tumultuous presidential campaign.

20 hours ago

Photo: More than 70 Seattle firefighters responded to a Columbia City fire after a construction sit...

Julia Dallas

Columbia City construction site goes up in flames; downs power lines, damages cars and home

More than 70 Seattle firefighters responded to a construction site in Columbia City after it went up in flames early Saturday morning.

21 hours ago

Seattle Councilmember Mosqueda proposes competing big business tax