Six new taxes in San Diego County for Affordable Housing

 San Diego City Council’s vote for the increase in the affordable housing fee was passed in early November at a vote of 5-4. This ‘jobs tax,’ is supported by the majority of the Jobs Coalition with 58 members giving the rise a nod.

However this implemented tax could gather a host of more tax increases for subsidized housing for. Also according to an article in Voice of San Diego, that no one has ever really given a yay or nay on the policy since the proposal has never really materialized as of yet.

Right now, the Job Coalition is made up of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association and the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.

The tax is essentially supposed to implement a tax hike in six different categories according to Village Voice:

  • Megabond with property tax: A tax administered in order to pay for streets, sidewalks, street lights and other areas of the San Diego County that needs repairs – this includes subsidized housing.
  • Repeal the ‘People’s Ordinance,’ charge for trash pick-up: This keeps San Diego from putting a fee on trash pick-up at single family homes.
  • More hotel Taxes: The occupancy tax is in order to hike the tax up to 10.5 percent on the stay of a hotel customer. However, there are some hotels that charge as much as 15 percent, while San Diego already implements two percent rise for travelers from outside of San Diego and an additional one to three percent pending on the location to the downtown area.
  • Real estate transfer tax: Already this coalition is ready for the tax increase. This tax hike is charged whenever the title of the real estate changes to another owner.
  • One-time tax on business: Targets commercial development which was the 5-4 vote for commercial construction.
  • Document recording tax: The coalition also in agreement of a document officially recorded with the city.


All of these taxes are supposed to be administered for affordable or subsidized housing. Smaller group that aren’t about a part of the San Diego City Council or the coalition have their doubts to these taxes.

“There needs to be a degree of feasibility for something to be called an alternative,” said Colin Parent of the Housing Commission to the Voice of San Diego. “A lot of these recommendations are broadly conceptualized ideas that take a lot more effort in order to accomplish, rather than just asking the City Council to do them.”

“My view of policy making is to identify things that can get done and have starts and finishes, and border wish list documents don’t meet that standard for me.”

“We probably would take it through committee at the point that the city considered them as viable a policy,” said Felipe Monroig of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association to the Voice of San Diego. “The lack of (the city) looking at the alternatives meant (it wasn’t) worth going through that review process.”

“They clearly haven’t been (considering these alternatives), so there’s no reason for us to go through that process.”

While others loved the idea of the tax increases.

“I think it’s a good idea and something regionally we need to do,” said Mar Cafferty of the San Diego Regional Economic Development Council to the Voice of San Diego. “When you get back to the idea of the linkage fee as something tacked onto the business community as opposed to broadly spreading something across the region in a thoughtful manner, in a way that a lot of folks could come to the table and say, ‘OK, it’s a tax increase or it’s a fee increase, but at least we’re all in it together, and it’ll net good things for region.”

By Linda Moore

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