Mayor Durkan Signs New Business Tax Ordinance to Address Homelessness Crisis

Seattle (May 16) – Shortly after the City Clerk transmitted the ordinance, Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan signed into law a new tax on large businesses to help address Seattle’s homelessness crisis – the City will begin the rulemaking process to prepare for implementation for January 1, 2019.

“We must make urgent progress on our affordability and homelessness crisis. Looking ahead, I am focused on acting to move people off the street and into safer places, to clean up the garbage and needles that are in our parks and in our communities, and to provide resources to those people experiencing homelessness, including job training, behavioral health services, and other supportive services,” said Mayor Durkan. “I’ve heard Seattle loud and clear: they want basic services delivered and are concerned whether the City of Seattle is using their money wisely, efficiently, and responsibly. As part of the budget process, I will remain focused on accountability and transparency for every department and on how this new revenue is going to be used towards homelessness services and new affordable housing.”

“I fundamentally believe that we must continue to come together to listen to one another to address these significant challenges. I understand there are very strong passions and genuine policy differences between neighbors, businesses, community leaders and people across our City on how to best address this crisis, but I know we can be a City that continues to invent the future and come together to build a more affordable, inclusive, and just future for all who call this great City home,” concluded Mayor Durkan.

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