Tacoma Urbanist

Nov. 23, 2011 at 12:37am

What Combination of New "Revenues" and/or Budget Cuts Should Tacoma Make?

Today, the Tribune reports that multiple potential sources of new revenue are being considered to reduce the budget cuts in the budget.

Which new revenue sources (aka tax increased) should be implemented if any at all? Here they are:

1) Increasing red light camera ticket fines from $101 to $124 (to raise about $419,500).

2) Increasing yearly business licenses fees from $80 to $90 ($220,000).

3) Eliminating admission tax deductions on tickets to performances and other events hosted by nonprofit groups ($300,000).

4) Establishing a half-price annual business fee, starting at $40, for businesses with gross revenues under $10,000 ($200,000).

5) Increasing false alarm service fees from $60 to $100 ($156,000).

6) Establishing a $20 city car tab fee to pay for some transportation programs;

7) Eliminating business and occupation tax reductions long provided to health-care nonprofits;

8) Instituting a 1/10th of one percent sales tax to partially subsidize some mental health and chemical dependency programs.

What other revenue sources or budget cuts should the Tacoma City Council make?

How about selling off some of the vacant (and some blighted) property that the City of Tacoma owns and placing it on the tax rolls?



comments [3]  |  posted under tacoma


by fredo on 11/23/2011 @ 10:56am
Thanks Erik,

I say no to all revenue increase proposals. This budget problem should be addressed through an all-cuts approach.

The people employed by the city who really are just taking up space should be fired. There should be significant reductions at Economic Development. The travel budget for the council should be placed on "hold." Many of the non-profit grants should be placed on moritorium until the economy improves All pet projects should be cancelled. We should have an across-the-board reduction in pay for all remaining city employees. There should be a very careful examination of the responsibiliteis and pay associated with the 700+ city employees who are taking home over $100,000 each per year. I would like to see a program instituted that pays $2000 to any city employee who can identify someone who was hired because of cronyism or nepotism. That's all I have for now.

by Erik on 11/23/2011 @ 12:06pm
The worst proposal IMO is:

4) Establishing a half-price annual business fee, starting at $40, for businesses with gross revenues under $10,000 ($200,000).

Trying to impose a tax on tiny micro businesses making less than 10k a year would take a great amount of time, effort and expense, bring in little funds, be regressive and discourage much needed new businesses.

by Marty C on 11/23/2011 @ 12:58pm
@ 3
Those businesses are already filing a business license and the City is already incuring the cost of processing them. There would be no additional cost to the city.

Also a proposal was made to alter it to a 12k threshold and lower it to $25.oo.

Several of these would be absentee land lords and ADUs.