Mayor Says No on Prop Y
Increasing the sales tax is wrong.
Mayor Bobby Shriver, in opposing this tax said: “The City is rich…” and to say “the City is in some sort of financial extremis is just not borne out by the facts.”
Residents’ objections to Y:
1. Revenues have been secured by a raise in taxes already. A 10% Utility Tax expansion to “preserve essential City services and school programs” was approved by voters in 2008.
2. There are serious unintended consequences. Increasing the sales tax to over 10% can drive many people to shop elsewhere — causing permanent harm to our community. Loss of local small businesses, local jobs and convenient goods and services hurts the Santa Monica neighborhoods we want to preserve and maintain. Local character should not be put at risk.
3. This tax money can be used for ANY purpose. The possibility of education funding is only a politician’s promise. There’s no guarantee schools or police and fire departments will receive monies from this tax increase.
4. The city budget is growing. It has increased $25 million in the past two years to over a half billion dollars! Per capita, Santa Monica is one of the richest municipal governments in the state. In fact, dozens now draw lucrative annual City pensions over $100,000, with many more in the wings.
5. This tax is unfair. This might seem like a “small” tax to many. However, fixed income individuals, seniors on social security, the disabled and unemployed really do suffer from the constant erosion of their limited funds. This tax hurts those who struggle to cope with rising costs. There’s no exemption for taxable basic necessities.
6. This tax will NEVER expire. Your local purchasing will cost you more forever.
Don’t Trust the Politicians To Provide Funding For Our Schools
We support funding the Santa Monica schools. It is wrong to increase the sales tax to 10.25% with NO GUARANTEE the money will be given to the schools.
The City has the money now, but spends it on other projects.
For instance, the City of Santa Monica recently bought land in downtown Santa Monica for $40 million for no stated purpose.
The City of Santa Monica also recently gave over $6 million to a local non-profit to develop a new low-income rental housing project. This is the same amount of money the City promises to give to the SMMUSD if the tax increase passes.
To the politicians buying property and development takes priority over rehiring laid off teachers.
Giving more money to the city will not change their priorities.
The Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) lost billion dollars in the stock market in the past few years. With severe unfunded liabilities the Public Employees Retirement System will be making demands on the City of Santa Monica to increase its contribution to the retirement fund.
City Hall have been expanding and granting pay raises at an alarming pace. It has giant pension obligations that are exploding. It is very likely the money generated from the increased sales tax will be siphoned off to pay these huge pension obligations, rather than discretionary funding of schools.
Vote no on this “suggestion”, and tell the Santa Monica Malibu School District they should put their own sales tax measure on the ballot. If approved, the school district would be guaranteed all the money for education.
VOTE NO on Proposition Y
1. Santa Monica Mayor Shriver says the proponents are not correct, vital services are safe.
“In the conduct of the campaign we don’t want there to be a fear that services will be lost if this measure does not pass. That is not true. (Saying) your 911 service, your emergency service is at risk is not true.”
Bobby Shriver, Mayor of Santa Monica
2. The city does not need the money.
“I really think this is not a very good idea at this time to go forward with a flat tax in this manner, I have yet to see with all the things going on within the City of Santa Monica the urgent need for this fee.”
Mark Gold, Executive Director of Heal the Bay
3. This measure is harmful to local merchants.
“Inevitably consumer spending in Santa Monica will continue to decline and the City Council will have to look elsewhere for revenue. Additionally, when consumer spending declines, local businesses will close and unemployment will rise.”
Eddie Guerboian, Past Chairman of the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce
4. This measure is harmful to residents.
“This is a regressive tax that hurts renters and all Santa Monica consumers.”
Robert Kronovet, Santa Monica Rent Control Board Commissioner
5. The residents should not bear the burden of the City’s over-spending.
“Because we have not managed the cost side of the budget well enough, I don’t think it’s the right time to ask the people for more tax revenue.”
Bobby Shriver, Mayor of Santa Monica
(ADIVISORY VOTE) REBUTTAL
This measure is designed to trick you by raising false hopes.
Can you trust a promise from a politician?
There is no guarantee the schools will get any money.
There is no guarantee the City will dedicate this tax money exclusively for vital services.
They can use this tax money to boost salaries!
Astute observers of Santa Monica politics say –
“… they want the voters to believe the money is for the schools without being required to give it to the schools. That is brilliant.”
“ … if the City’s half-cent sales tax passes, even with the advisory measure calling for half of the money to go to the district, inevitably there will be pressure on the council to use the money for City purposes”.
“Based on a recent Court of Appeals case government bureaucrats illegally withheld millions of dollars from school districts. Millions of dollars more will be coming to SMMUSD thanks to the decision. If politicians can’t be trusted to give school districts the funds they are legally entitled to, why would you trust them to follow a voter advisory poll?”
Attorney at Law
Vote No on Proposition ___
Tell the politicians you are not falling for their tricks.
More information can be found here.