’Google Headcount Tax’ Could Head to November Ballot

Mountain View city council members on Tuesday are slated to make a final decision on the so-called "Google headcount tax," which would establish a tax based on the number of workers a company employs within city limits.

The South Bay city indicated that it needs the extra funds to construct more affordable housing for people priced out of the area and to help alleviate traffic woes created by the business boom in Silicon Valley.

Specifically, Mountain View is proposing to restructure its current business license tax. If approved by voters, the plan would tax businesses with up to 50 employees anywhere from $100 to $400 a year. For businesses with more than 50 employees, a tax would exist per employee. The tax amount would range anywhere from $50 to $300 per worker.

If such a tax passes in Mountain View, Google, for example, would fork over approximately $5.4 million to the city the first year.

The South Bay city estimates the tax would generate around $10 million a year.

The president of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group told the Mercury News he believes the proposed tax hike would discourage job growth.

In addition to Mountain View, Cupertino, which is home to Apple, is also looking at a similar measure that could appear on the November ballot.

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