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City wants feedback on tax ideas

Original post made on Apr 3, 2018

With the November election on the horizon, city officials are trying to gauge whether local voters will support some new tax measures at the ballot box.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 3, 2018, 10:19 AM

Comments (47)

132 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 3, 2018 at 11:49 am

Why are city "tax ideas" always tax increases? What about finding efficient ways of spending money.


137 people like this
Posted by Wayne
a resident of Bailey Park
on Apr 3, 2018 at 1:04 pm

How about no new taxes the city has a surplus try to spend less and clean the city council out. Hotels are already to expensive in the area the tax on weed will only cause more black market illegal weed to be sold. When will the tax stop.


139 people like this
Posted by patrick
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 3, 2018 at 1:44 pm

Fully fund the pension shortfall. Stop spending money until you pay your debts.
Npthing else is important until we remove the time-bomb we left to future citizens.
The train to nowhere (Los Angeles) isn't gonna happen Stop pretending it is.


165 people like this
Posted by Otto_Maddox
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 3, 2018 at 2:44 pm

Otto_Maddox is a registered user.

Here's a "tax idea".. give us our money back.

I know, crazy thought.

We're just revenue streams to the people running this city. Don't kid yourself if you think otherwise.


50 people like this
Posted by William Hitchens
a resident of Waverly Park
on Apr 3, 2018 at 2:57 pm

William Hitchens is a registered user.

My responses:
1. Headcount tax: No. They already pay sales tax.
2. Pot tax: Don't permit the sale of pot in MV. Let other cities deal with its problems.
3. Hotel tax: Yes, as long as it includes online services like Airbnb and also rooms rented to students by individual homeowners or apartment dwellers.

In general, given its recent track record, I don't trust MV to spend money wisely and for the overall benefit of the community at large. They pander to too many special interest groups.


269 people like this
Posted by Flash
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 3, 2018 at 3:58 pm

It’s interesting that there seems to be enough money to fund legal aid to illegal immigrants, to support food trucks to serve free food at area parks (without recipients demonstrating need) and to fund free sanitary waste dumping services to vehicles illegally parked on our streets but there is never enough money to provide basic city services to the tax-paying residents, many of whom are already paying extraordinarily high property taxes. How about our city officials exercising good judgement about how to spend the money they already have? A novel idea, I know...


19 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Bailey Park
on Apr 3, 2018 at 4:16 pm

Everyone here complaining about property taxes, please post your effective property tax rate on the market value of your house, so the rest of us can judge just how much you're paying on that $2M house.


202 people like this
Posted by Flash
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 3, 2018 at 5:38 pm

@Taxes- not sure what your point is. We all know that due to Prop 13 property tax rate is variable depending on when you purchased your home. Effective rate is about 1.25% of purchase price + all the bonds you pay for + yearly capped increases. But when new taxes are instituted EVERYONE pays, not just the low-paying residents. And we’re all paying the highest state income tax in the country (at least those of us that pay income tax). No new taxes! Enough is enough, the squandering must stop.


Posted by Taxes
a resident of Bailey Park

on Apr 3, 2018 at 5:42 pm


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135 people like this
Posted by angry MV homeowner
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 3, 2018 at 9:37 pm

Mountain View city government destructively waffles on burning quality-of-life issues and spends its windfall tax revenues irresponsibly. The city does not deserve additional money, and is certain to spend in ways that cause net harm to the citizens. No No NO!


163 people like this
Posted by SC Parent
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 4, 2018 at 6:41 am

This is just about the worst survey I've ever seen. The leading questions, limited responses allowed, and "fait accompli" tone demonstrate a lack of desire for meaningful engagement with MV residents. This "survey" is designed to allow MV staff to say "our residents are clamoring for us to do this [whatever project/tax]."


141 people like this
Posted by BillyJoe
a resident of North Bayshore
on Apr 4, 2018 at 11:17 am

BillyJoe is a registered user.

Larceny Lenny wants more tax money. How about not paying google $30 million to build a friggin road for them? Oh wait...Larceny Lenny says we don't need to worry about that....


7 people like this
Posted by Rodger
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 4, 2018 at 6:35 pm

Let’s find a way tax software and similar services.

Outlaw pot sales in the city.

Make hotel taxes comparable to nearby cities.

Charge for overnight parking with consecutive nights prohibited except for nearby residences.

Reduce residual prices for garbage, water, and sewer.


93 people like this
Posted by Sophie
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2018 at 8:48 am

Consider how to collect tax from RV dwellers who parked in Mountain View more than X number days. They occupy the public land, enjoy some city services, and use utilities.


8 people like this
Posted by YIMBY
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2018 at 12:27 pm

Lots of older homeowners in this thread complaining about taxes while every newly purchased property ends up subsidizing what they're under-paying.


114 people like this
Posted by Robyn
a resident of another community
on Apr 5, 2018 at 3:19 pm

No new taxes. What about using an economy of scale based on the influx of new people. Constantly raising taxes and fees is objectionable. We receive no commensurate benefit.


6 people like this
Posted by MVResident
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2018 at 3:35 pm

Lets repeal Prop 13 and make the property taxes fair for everyone! It's insane one neighbor can be paying $1K a year and another paying $15K a year for same property size.


68 people like this
Posted by PeaceLove
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 5, 2018 at 10:15 pm

Thousands of Mountain View residents use cannabis to assist with pain, concentration, phobias, anxiety, depression and many other conditions. Cannabis in its raw form should NOT be taxed. It's bad enough that the state has created onerous requirements for providers, including very high taxes already. Mountain View should take the lead in supporting dispensaries in the city as soon as possible.

It's been over TWENTY YEARS since the voters in Mountain View overwhelmingly supported making cannabis available to those who need it and the city government has consistently thwarted the will of the voters by disallowing it in the city. Contrary to the propaganda often spouted by opponents, cannabis dispensaries are not associated with any increase in crime. Cannabis use, on the other hand, correlates with lower rates of traffic accidents, suicide, violent crime and opiate use.

NO TAXES ON CANNABIS CONSUMERS. Let's instead create a special tax on alcohol, which kills tens of thousands of people every year. MV police spend much more time and money on dealing with alcohol-related problems than they will ever spend on cannabis-related problems.


213 people like this
Posted by Unions are the problem
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 6, 2018 at 4:23 pm

The problem is the Unions have taken over the govt. Unions have through back door negotiations created an unfundable pay/retirement/medical benefits that will financially run our cities.

To top that off they take a part of each and every govt. employees check. Just think, all that money could pay off most of the unfunded liabilities the State faces.


152 people like this
Posted by @MVResident
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 6, 2018 at 4:36 pm

@MVResident and does that want to get rid of prop 13, you say one person is paying 1k and another is paying 15k.

Just think, inorder for someone to pay 1k of property tax on a property that is now the same value as someone paying 15k property tax, then that person had to have brought their house when prices where like 65k for the same house. Lets see that was back in 1950 or somewhere around there. If someone else is paying 15k, they just brought the same type of property for 1.5million.

So basically all the people that hate prop 13 want to kick out our grandparents so they can bring in more money to the city coffers. Unbelievable what people will do for more money.


120 people like this
Posted by Effective tax rate
a resident of another community
on Apr 6, 2018 at 8:40 pm

@Taxes: The effective tax rate is identical to the tax rate as it is already allowed to increase at a rate close to or exceeding inflation. What you're actually asking for is the tax rate on unrealized capital gains. And the tax rate on unrealized capital gains is, and should be, zero.

Anybody care to start paying taxes for unrealized capital gains on stocks and options they haven't exercised?


195 people like this
Posted by Here Here
a resident of another community
on Apr 6, 2018 at 8:48 pm

MV Resident: it's not just grandma they're after. It's us non-tech workers, too. My income hasn't escalated at the same rate as local real estate, and I certainly couldn't afford the ~$28k/yr they'd be charging me now on the home I bought in '09 if it weren't for Prop 13. I'd already have been forced out of my home. All I hear when the anti-13ers start griping is them saying how their higher income gives them the right to force me out of my house to make way for the rich.


13 people like this
Posted by YIMBY
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2018 at 1:12 pm

"All I hear when the anti-13ers start griping is them saying how their higher income gives them the right to force me out of my house to make way for the rich."

It's really more about forcing homeowners to stop blocking new housing from being built, since their efforts to do so has resulted in the current housing crunch and resulting high housing costs that they don't end up paying (they technically even benefit from it).


22 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 7, 2018 at 1:17 pm

It's amazing that Prop 13 has made people to reject the entire concept of property taxes. I guess when it gives you an annual windfall on the order of tens of thousands of dollars per year, you can afford to compartmentalize how unfair it is. Just look at the person above sitting on an entirely unearned $1.5M and acting like a victim!


125 people like this
Posted by Taxes has it right
a resident of another community
on Apr 7, 2018 at 6:01 pm

I'm with Taxes. These low income folk need to get out of the way. They don't deserve to keep their houses and need to start paying taxes on those unrealized capital gains. LOL


24 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 7, 2018 at 6:26 pm

I know you're being facetious, but this quite an educational moment. These are people who are multimillionaires, and yet we have those who have less wealth than them paying more in taxes. Is that what you consider fair? This is what people are talking about when they talk about our rigged economy.


15 people like this
Posted by YIMBY
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 7, 2018 at 6:29 pm

Homeowners don't deserve special treatment in terms of being shielded from rising housing costs when they're the ones causing them to rise and financially benefitting from it. I don't care how rich or poor you are, whether you rent or own, everyone should feel the pinch when housing costs are exploding so that everyone can be motivated to fix it.


208 people like this
Posted by Here Here
a resident of another community
on Apr 7, 2018 at 8:29 pm

@Taxes: On the contrary, I'm not acting like a victim at all. That is quite clearly your side of the argument (that you're being victimized by prop 13). For my part, prop13 has done its job, which is to lock my property taxes approximately to inflation ensuring I'm not forced out of my home as opposed to slaving my taxes to other people's incomes. Glad 65% of Californians get that.


19 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 7, 2018 at 8:51 pm

Are you a big supporter of rent control too? Should all rents only rise with inflation, or is having a home a right only reserved for millionaires here?


9 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 9, 2018 at 3:18 pm

The US has 49 other states which do not have Prop 13, and most of them have found ways of keeping people from losing their homes due to property taxes. In New England, for example, owner-residents generally pay a lower rate than owners who live elsewhere, and there are further discounts for retired people and whatnot. Granted, CA does have a generally big problem with house appreciation, due to successful industries bringing people here, and existing property owners not wanting newcomers to be able to own property by virtue of opposing its existence.


9 people like this
Posted by let'sgetreal
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 10, 2018 at 10:48 am

Is this survey a joke? I feel like I'm being led to the slaughter house.


144 people like this
Posted by psr
a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 10, 2018 at 5:24 pm

psr is a registered user.

People staying in their houses long term is causing other people to pay outrageous amounts for the other house in the city?

What complete and utter nonsense. The people causing that are the ones paying more for a house than it is worth and the only ones doing that are the new arrivals who have more money than sense.


4 people like this
Posted by mark
a resident of Whisman Station
on Apr 10, 2018 at 6:39 pm

The amount of venom spilling of the anti-tax crowd is truly disheartening.

Instead of having a dialogue of how we can work together to fix the housing and infrastructure crisis we are all facing, they prefer to stick their head in to the sand, or worse, keep slinging mud at the city council who is trying to fix the problem, instead of pretending that it doesn't exist.

I might not always agree with what Mountain View City council is doing, but , but at least I have a full confidence in them.


330 people like this
Posted by psr
a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 10, 2018 at 9:27 pm

psr is a registered user.

@mark

I would love to have a dialog about solving the problem. However, whenever any of us say that the council should stop wasting money on things they should not be using tax dollars to fund, we are told that we are sticking our heads in the sand and slinging mud. We have a city council that spends tax dollars on studies to close lanes of traffic (after the citizens voice their opposition), providing legal help to those who flout our laws (while shielding those people from federal authorities) and many other money-wasting activities that are not in the interest of the residents.

IMHO, if you think the only solution to the problems we have in this city is raising taxes and spending more money, perhaps those of us who oppose that are not the ones with our heads in the sand. Until the city council shows they can use our money more wisely, they don't deserve another hard-earned nickle.


11 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 10, 2018 at 9:35 pm

@psr, I was looking in the other article, and I don't think I ever saw you address the question someone posed. What's your effective property tax rate on the market value of your house? You complain a lot about taxes, but it sounds like you're paying a lot less than people new to the city are.


12 people like this
Posted by Mark
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 10, 2018 at 11:10 pm

@psr sure citizens voice their concerns about many things. Some voice concerns about closing lanes, others about keeping them and encouraging through traffic. Whatever. (I don't know the details about your particular situation, but hey I would love some lanes in my neighborhood to be closed!)


That's why we need a study to determine the objective outcome of the proposed action, to measure the trade-offs. It properly functioning society just a complaint of "concerned citizen" should not be enough to kill an idea. Don't you agree?


Re immigration and other items. You are picking up peanuts that you personally don't like (like a legal help to immigrants - run by volunteers out of a city library), and use that to proclaim that somehow our city government is broken... I encourage you to check city budget and actually see the expense on those activities compared to the ones we are discussing here. (E.g. building new underpass)
Web Link

Also let me assure you plenty of people, who live here, and have as much legal rights to vote as you do, actually think this is a great idea. Myself included. It might sound strange to you but many people do think that we believe that at the very least everyone deserves a fair trial to decide their admissibility to this country - hey they might have a right to stay under current laws! Something the current federal government is unwilling to do.


11 people like this
Posted by YIMBY
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 2:29 am

@psr

"People staying in their houses long term is causing other people to pay outrageous amounts for the other house in the city?"

When those same people see fit to stay in their home while also blocking other housing from being built in a city that's a job center, yes.


288 people like this
Posted by psr
a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 11, 2018 at 12:21 pm

psr is a registered user.

@Taxes
I pay tens of thousands of dollars each year in property taxes. My effective tax rate is immaterial and none of your business. What is important is that I am paying on what I paid for the house, not what I might sell it for, which is what is reasonable. That is the law.

@mark
We do not need a second study (or more) when, after reviewing the results of the first study, the people soundly reject the idea. That is wasting money to attempt to force something on the people that they do not want or need. If the council were good steward of our money, that would be one thing. However, they are not. They will spend hand over fist to push their agenda, lie about their stands on issues to get elected and ignore the will of the people. I don't support that and never will.

When people break federal law and my city government chooses to conceal those people from prosecution, they are aiding and abetting those people in a commission of a crime. Why you think it is reasonable that I pay for that with my tax dollars is beyond me. If you want to pay for their defense with your money, feel free. Tax dollars are to provide for citizens, not those who break laws.

@YIMBY
Nobody is blocking anything. You are just angry that anyone has a different opinion than you do and has the guts to voice it. You are not the only person entitled to an opinion.


13 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 11, 2018 at 12:32 pm

Oh, so you're sitting in a multimillion dollar house and complaining about "muh taxes." You may think it's immaterial, but the rest of us rightly understand that you're simply not paying your fair share. Talk about a rigged economy!


3 people like this
Posted by @taxes
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 8:34 pm

Since your so interested in other peoples property taxes, why don't you answer your own question? What's your effective property tax rate on the market value of your house? Or do you pay no property taxes?

The only problem with raising taxes is that it will end up the same way as always, nothing being done expect an increase in government head count.




7 people like this
Posted by @taxes
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 9:02 pm

"Talk about a rigged economy!"

Are you kidding? If someone purchased property whether it's today or 30+ yrs ago, they did it fair and square within the law. What you and your followers are suggesting is a form of Communism where property taxes changes by whoever is in office or power.

@yimby "I don't care how rich or poor you are, whether you rent or own, everyone should feel the pinch when housing costs are exploding so that everyone can be motivated to fix it."

Yeah buddy, i'm with you lets put grandma back to work building skyscrapers so you can be happy. If i remember history right, Ramsesys II used old woman to grease the giant stones that 80 people were pulling/pushing.


9 people like this
Posted by Misuse
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 9:51 pm

For all the ones wanting more taxes, how about looking at the misuse of government funds like someone mentioned earlier?

1) How many double dippers are there in MT. View? For does that don't know what double dipping is, it's when someone retires then comes back to work another job and makes both retirement money and money from the other job. The upper class of government are notorious for this type of fraud. State wide there are probably billions wasted like this.

2) Or how the schools and cities need to pay half a million dollars to fire someone, or force them to leave, because the unions put it in their contracts.

3) How unpaid sick leave, vacation time can bump up workers retirement pay. With government retirement age starting at 50, for every worker, we have 1 or two retires that are also getting paid. Why is retirement pay at 85+% of regular pay?

4) How come every time i see government workers working, only one is working and the others are watching?

Thanks to the unions our government workers are the new upper class and this will eventually bankrupt our system at this rate. Maybe that is the whole idea. The people can have there cake and eat it. But no one cares about the misuses, they only care about milking more money out of the people. And if you are on a fixed income or aging with limited amount of money, then you may need to find work, since the money hungry government and some people like Yimby want you to contribute.

This reminds me of a movie, The little shop of horrors, where in our senario, the plant that always wants feeding is the government.


13 people like this
Posted by Taxes
a resident of Gemello
on Apr 11, 2018 at 10:03 pm

Yes, @taxes, you nailed it. Assessing property taxes on the market value of your house is Communism. Communism that's practiced in all 49 other states and California pre-1978.

It is, in fact, a rigged economy, where the wealthy landowners are free-riding off the newcomers, and it's entirely legal! That's what everyone means by rigged, landowners in 1978 set up a sweet deal for themselves at the expense of future generations.

And certainly, Grandma will have to go build work manual labor after she walks off with $2M+. Do you people actually listen to yourselves?


5 people like this
Posted by YIMBY
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 12, 2018 at 10:22 am

@taxes

"Yeah buddy, i'm with you lets put grandma back to work building skyscrapers so you can be happy. If i remember history right, Ramsesys II used old woman to grease the giant stones that 80 people were pulling/pushing."

Yeah, keeping grandma in her home was the emotional appeal used to freeze property taxes for literally everyone. If this was really about that then a tax deferments for financial hardship would have sufficed.

What is Grandma rents? Clearly we need state-wide rent control then, right?


7 people like this
Posted by Tax the Renters
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 13, 2018 at 3:45 pm

People renting are getting a free ride in Mnt View. We need to charge a Renters Tax to all renters. I suggest $2500 per head per apt. unit be paid by the renters. This way these freeloaders will understand there is no free lunch.


5 people like this
Posted by Tax the Trolls
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 13, 2018 at 4:45 pm

@Tax the Renters -- Actually, I have a better idea.

The City of Mountain View should levy a tax of no less than $250,000 on trolls like you, when you make comments like you've just done.

With any luck, sanity will be restored on these boards.


3 people like this
Posted by Howard
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 17, 2018 at 9:42 am

Howard is a registered user.

Dam, the more ya give em, the more they spend and the more they create deficits.
Next year you'll get a new tax to pay for this years tax.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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