SAN FRANCISCO—A new bill proposal known as Article 33, otherwise known as the “Mental Health Gross Receipts Tax Ordinance,” will tax certain companies who pay their CEO’s 100 times more than their median wage-earning workers. The tax revenue will fund a universal mental health program for those in psychiatric emergencies or distress.

The ordinance will be submitted to the voters of the City and County of San Francisco during Election Day on November 5, 2019. The ordinance states that a mental health gross receipts tax will be applied to businesses when their executive member’s compensation is 100 times greater than their median wage-earning worker’s compensation.

The collective amount gathered after the increased tax initiative will fund a program entitled Mental Health SF and will increase the city’s limits on the amount that can be spent with taxpayer money on publicly funded programs. The imposition of the tax will help fund mental health services for those struggling with mental illness or substance abuse and will cover the cost of psychiatric medication.

As stated in the proposed initiative: “Mental Health SF shall provide a broad range of mental health services, substance use treatment, and psychiatric medications to individuals who: lack health insurance; are enrolled in Healthy San Francisco; are enrolled in a Medi-Cal managed care plan and receive behavioral health services from the Department of Public Health’s Community Behavioral Health Services under California’s Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services Waiver; or are released from the County jail, prior to their enrollment in Medi-Cal.”