ICYMI: 30 Newspapers Across California Urge Voters to Reject Proposition 15

SACRAMENTO, CA – In a show of force, 30 newspapers across California have urged their readers to vote no on Proposition 15, the $11.5 billion-a-year property tax increase on the November ballot. The newspapers cite concerns about raising taxes on small businesses struggling to survive the pandemic, higher costs for consumers during an unprecedented economic crisis, among many other reasons to vote no on Prop 15.

Read excerpts from the newspapers below:

Orange County RegisterLos Angeles Daily NewsSan Gabriel Valley TribuneTorrance Daily BreezePasadena Star-NewsPress-TelegramRiverside Press-EnterpriseSan Bernardino SunWhittier Daily NewsRedlands Daily FactsInland Valley Daily Bulletin:

Passing Proposition 15 would pummel California’s economy at the very worst time. … It must never be forgotten that when taxes go up, there are downstream consequences. This measure would raise the cost of living, as grocery stores, retailers and other businesses face higher costs. Increases to California’s cost of living fall hardest on those with less means. With about one-in-five Californians living in poverty even before the pandemic, the regressive impacts of this measure will be significant.”

San Jose Mercury NewsEast Bay TimesMarin Independent JournalLake County Record-Bee:

“The higher taxes in many cases would be passed on to the tenants of those commercial and industrial property owners. In short, it’s a tax on businesses, often small businesses, at a time when they can least afford it.”

San Diego Union-Tribune:

“Vote no on Prop. 15. A vast tax hike during a deep recession is a crazy idea.”

Santa Cruz Sentinel:

“…a tax on big businesses will in many cases just result in property owners passing along the increase to small businesses that lease or rent their space. To say the very least, this would create a new burden on small businesses that are already reeling from the economic effects of the pandemic. Another consequence: Businesses likely would also pass along the increase to consumers in the form of higher prices.”

Santa Barbara News-Press:

“For decades, Prop. 13 has prevented people from losing their family homes and businesses. It also protected the elderly, living on fixed incomes so they would not be taxed out of their residence.”

Santa Rosa Press Democrat:

“…nothing in Proposition 15 stops commercial landlords from passing the cost to tenants, including small business owners. Indeed, many business leases include charges for property taxes.”

San Luis Obispo TribuneFresno Bee:

“Property owners could simply pass on the tax increases to their tenants, causing even more business closures and job losses.”

Bakersfield Californian:

“…Proposition 15 will kick California businesses while they are down and likely will result in even more job losses.”

Chico Enterprise-Record:

“And you know the “wealthy corporations” aren’t going to eat the tax hike. Let’s use a middle number of $10 billion. They’re going to pass that on to you. Each Californian’s share would be about $250 a year if it fell out evenly. It won’t. The rich with their clever accountants will pay less, and the poor will pay more.”

Palo Alto Daily Post:

“Promoters say they’re just taxing big corporations to pay for schools. But many small businesses have “triple net” leases that require them to pay the rent plus utilities, insurance and all other costs including property taxes. So Prop. 15 will hit the corner deli, neighborhood dry cleaner and mom-and-pop grocery with a stiff tax increase. This will crush the small businesses who managed to survive the Covid lockdown. If you care about preserving neighborhood retail, you’ll vote “no” on Prop. 15.”

The Desert Sun:

“Raising taxes now is the last thing struggling businesses and our millions of currently unemployed or underemployed workers need, and likely will send many that still hope for a financial future to seek greener pastures in other states.”

San Mateo Daily Journal:

“This measure ostensibly would not raise taxes on small businesses but there would be pass-through taxes and those businesses with triple net leases would be seriously affected.”

Redlands Community News:
“Many property owners would pay more and would pass much of those increases to their customers or to their tenants, who would pass the increases on to their customers — meaning us.”

Oroville Mercury-Register:

“Prop. 15: No”