by Donna Martinez
Former Senior Writer and Editor, John Locke Foundation
It’s a job tax, plain and simple. From the City of Seattle comes this smothering regulation on job creation. It was a 9 to zip vote to penalize Seattle’s highly successful businesses.
The result is a new tax of $275 per employee per year on companies grossing at least $20 million per year. It replaces what had been a proposed $500-per-head tax.
Amazon and Starbucks are the targets here. Amazon is a mega-employer in Seattle, with 45,000 people on the payroll.
However, Amazon Vice President Drew Herdener indicated that hard feelings linger.
“We are disappointed by today’s city council decision to introduce a tax on jobs,” he said in a statement. “While we have resumed construction planning… we remain very apprehensive about the future created by the council’s hostile approach and rhetoric toward larger businesses, which forces us to question our growth here…
“The city does not have a revenue problem — it has a spending efficiency problem. We are highly uncertain whether the city council’s anti-business positions or its spending inefficiency will change for the better.”
I’d say Mr. Herdener would feel much more comfortable here in North Carolina, where, for more than a half decade, legislative leaders have acted in a fiscally responsible way by reining in the growth of spending, lifting burdensome regulations on business, and cutting taxes to ensure hard-working North Carolinians keep more of what they earn.