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Oakland City Council approves ballot measure to increase tax on large businesses

401(K) 2012
Flickr / Creative Commons

The council voted unanimously to place a measure on the ballot that will tax businesses more when they earn more. The progressive tax would raise nearly $22 million annually and the revenue would be placed in the city's General Fund.

The aim is to make Oakland's tax structure "more fair" and provide money for needed city services to address problems like homelessness and illegal dumping, according to the council. Oakland's elected leaders said they hope to improve the quality of life for their constituents.

The money would help pay for parks, libraries, fire stations, and needed city workers.

About six thousand smaller Oakland businesses would get a tax cut under the proposal.

It has been 15 years since the city has overhauled its tax structure.

Now that the measure has passed the council, it will need the approval of a simple majority of voters to pass. It would go into effect Jan. 1st, 2023, if it passes in November.

Sunni M. Khalid is a veteran of more than 40 years in journalism, having worked has in print, radio, television, and web journalism.