In a full-page ad in the November 12 Seattle Times, Washington Retail and eight other business organizations called on the Seattle City Council to carefully prioritize City spending to address Seattle’s biggest challenges.
Seeking an honest discussion about taxes and spending, WR joined a broad array of business organizations: the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Seattle Association, WA Technology Industry Association, WA Food Industry Association, TechNet–NW, Seattle Latino Chamber of Commerce, Seattle Hotel Association, and the Seattle Restaurant Alliance.
The fundamental concern is that the City’s spending is out of control. From 2017 – 2023, City revenues grew at a robust 3.7% annually. But the City’s spending exploded, rising at a rate of 5.5% per year. As a result, Seattle is facing projected deficits of $227 million in 2025 and $207 million in 2026 – despite adding over $300 million annually in new taxes starting in 2021.
With the stunning election victories of moderate Council candidates earlier this month and polling that shows that 61% of voters believe taxes are too high for the services received, the time is now for the City Council to do a full review of spending.
Unfortunately, the City Council is focused on raising taxes and fees, making Seattle even less affordable for families and businesses.
The letter closed by saying, “We urge the City Council to work with the mayor’s office to make the same decisions many Seattleites do each month: prioritize spending, cut what’s unsustainable, and stop spending money you do have. Tell them to get real about their budget, focus on their responsibilities, and stop piling on new programs and taxes.”
- Take action here and let the City Council know you oppose new taxes and fees on the tech-sector.
- View the open letter
- View the press release