Seattle City Councilmembers announce another tax plan to bolster Metro’s budget

May 19, 2014

According to The Seattle Times, Seattle City Councilmembers Kshama Sawant and Nick Licata want to impose three tax increases to maintain Metro bus service in Seattle: a new tax on employers, higher parking taxes, and a hefty car tab fee.

Under the Councilmembers’ plan, employers would be taxed up to $18 per employee, per year. Parking taxes would go up to 17.5% from 12.5% and car owners who register their vehicles in Seattle would be taxed an additional $60 on top of the $20 drivers already pay to the city.

Councilmember Licata says the City Council can impose the parking and head taxes without a public vote, while the $60 car tab fee would be subject to a public vote.

Last week, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray unveiled his tax plan that included increasing car tab fees by $60 and increasing sales taxes by .1% to keep "the vast majority" of current service in Seattle.

Washington Policy Center recommends that King County officials should better manage their rising revenues and open a dialogue with union executives to maintain bus service without raising taxes. More on our recommendations can be found here.