Thursday, April 30, 2009

Bloomberg Looks To Increase City Sales Tax

Bloomberg has said that he loves rich people (which includes himself, as he is the wealthiest New Yorker as well as Mayor) and he shows it. The great majority of us who aren't do not get as much love, as he shows it in his policies and programs. Despite the millions spent on ads proclaiming his greatness to the city so that we re-elect him, the reality of what he's done to the city is far from the messages on his thirty-second spots and indirect ads plastered on subways extolling the city's efforts on such things as education are misleading those who read them. Parents who actually have to deal with the school system strongly disagree.

This post isn't about education though, but the topic does tie into the priorities of Bloomberg's Administration. With the tough economic times everyone is facing, the mayor fought off attempts to get a raise in the personal income tax for the wealthy, but if he is serious about raising the sales tax to 8.75%, it shows he's ready to institute a regressive tax on all New Yorkers instead of a progressive tax that balances the burden of our city's budget gap.

From The NY Times:

A month after imposing a property tax increase, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is expected to call for a $900 million increase in the city’s sales tax on Friday, as the city confronts a loss of revenue due to the economic downturn.

New York City already has one of the highest sales taxes in the nation, at 8.375 percent, and retailers are likely to fight the increase.[...]

In addition to the sales tax increase, Mr. Bloomberg would eliminate the $400 property tax rebate, for an approximate savings of $250 million. He also planned to renew his call for Albany to approve legislation that would charge customers a nickel for each new plastic bag they useat most stores.

So far that measure has not gained great traction with the public, despite supporters’ claims that it is both environmentally friendly and good for the city’s bottom line. There may be other taxes or fees as well.

The tax increases are part of a broader package of tough-love measures that Mr. Bloomberg intends to outline on Friday.
Bloomberg is all about tough-love for the masses, but not for those that live in the top 5%. Some people might like that approach, but with an honest appraisal of his stewardship as Mayor, the majority of those supporters would have to lie in that upper echelon of New York's class system.

If you can still afford private school for your kids, it won't be as bothersome if our public schools are crumbling. A sales tax increase is far better than a rise in the personal income tax when you are making a salary in the mid to high six figures. Everyone knows it pays to be rich, but when Bloomberg is in charge, he's the smartest investment in town for the wealthy, because hey, he loves you!

And for the rest of us? Just believe how great he is, because all those ads with "Bloomberg" on it say so.