Tax on High Earners Proposed to Fund Homeless Services in Seattle's King County

The Washington State Legislature is proposing a type of tax that the city of Seattle tried, and failed, to implement a few years go.

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February 3, 2020, 9:00 AM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Olympia, Washington

John T Callery / Shutterstock

"A new measure [pdf] introduced in the Washington state Legislature Wednesday would allow King County to impose a tax of 0.1 to 0.2 percent on businesses on the total payroll of employees who earn $150,000 per year or more," reports Kate Walters.

House Bill 2907, sponsored by State Rep. Nicole Macri (D-Seattle) among others, would raise $121 million in funding a year for homelessness services, affordable housing, public safety, and behavioral health services, according to Walters.

"The state measure specifically targets King County, as it would only authorize counties with populations exceeding two million to impose the tax. No other county in the state reaches that threshold."

Astute observers will remember that the city of Seattle nearly approved a similar tax in 2018, after Amazon, among others, voiced opposition.

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