SAN FRANCISCO—The city and county of San Francisco is considering a half-percent tax on city residents who make more than $1 million, the SF Examiner reported.
San Francisco has been struggling to combat a persistent deficit that is projected to rise to $848 million over the next 5 years. If the proposal succeeds, the city will recover a little less than $62 million annually.
Cities cannot impose an additional income tax on residents—they generate revenue through measures such as service taxes and property taxes. Eleven states currently allow cities to impose their own tax; in order for California to follow suit, the state legislature must approve a bill currently under construction in Sacramento.
San Francisco assemblymember Phil Ting (D) is spearheading the bill with Supervisor Aaron Perskin. Both city officials have argued that the measure will help fight rising income inequality in the city and provide a bulwark against potential cuts in federal funding proposed by President Donald Trump against sanctuary cities such as San Francisco.
Past attempts by counties in California to introduce a local income tax have been met with resistance. In 2016, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors proposed a bill to impose a similar “millionaire’s tax” in order to fund homeless services that was unsuccessful.