Hundreds of local laborers are planning to storm City Hall tonight to “oppose further service cuts and call on the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors for business tax reform.”
And if the mayor and city supervisors don’t listen, workers are planning to roll out their sleeping bags and stay the night, occupy-style.
According to a press release sent this morning, workers will meet at City Hall at 5:30 p.m. where they will explain how downtown businesses are cheating local residents. Afterward, they will deliver a letter to Mayor Ed Lee, detailing their demands as the mayor prepares to make serious cuts to help close a $170 million budget hole. The mayor and city unions are at odds over unresolved contract negotiations with a May 15 deadline looming.
“Thousands of us took our message to Bank of America, where 23 of us were arrested on April 18. Now, we go to City Hall, where bad decisions to coddle big business continues at the expense of city workers and S.F. residents,” said Karen Joubert, a staffing coordinator at Laguna Honda Hospital.
Specifically, the unions want businesses to kick in their fair share, noting that only 10 percent of local registered businesses pay the payroll tax. That means highly profitable sectors of the economy, including banks and multinational corporations, aren’t being taxed. By closing the loopholes and asking big businesses for more cash, the city could save up to $100 million in one year, according to unions.
Unions are prepared to put a ballot measure of their own before voters in November if the mayor doesn’t come up with a tax reform plan that generates more money for the city.
Stay tuned for the excitement tonight.