While billionaire tech titans have been sparring over Twitter over how to fix the homeless problem plaguing San Francisco, voters will be the ones with the real power come this November.
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A new proposed business tax called Proposition C to help curb the city’s homelessness epidemic will be on the ballot for San Francisco voters on Nov. 6.
The new tax would require businesses with over $50 million in gross receipts to pay a tax of less than 1 percent and those with over $1 billion in gross annual receipts to pay tax of 1.5 percent to fund housing and homelessness services throughout the city.
The new ordinance could generate close to $300 million annually beginning in 2019 for the city’s efforts in aiding its homelessness crisis.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff has strongly endorsed the new tax, even pledging up to $2 million to support it.
Last week, Benioff tweeted that, “Homelessness is all of our responsibility which is why we are supporting Prop C. Together, as one San Francisco, we can take on our city’s most complex & difficult problems. As SF’s largest employer we recognize we are part of the solution.”
But others aren’t so convinced. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has publicly supported officials such as San Francisco Mayor London Breed, who argue that the proposition lacks accountability and could make the homelessness situation worse.
“By dramatically increasing our homelessness spending without working with neighboring counties, Proposition C could put us in the untenable and expensive position of funding services for residents from other counties,” Breed said in a statement earlier this month.
She added that San Francisco cannot solve this problem by simply writing a large check, but they need to work with neighboring counties and leadership in Sacramento “to bring new state, and ideally federal, money to the table.”
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, there are currently more than 7,000 people living on the streets in San Francisco.