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San Francisco Mayor Opposes Tech Tax To Pay For Homeless

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) -- A proposed payroll tax on tech firms to pay for homeless services is being met with resistance from San Francisco's Mayor.

KCBS's Margie Shafer reports the mayor says he remains committed to addressing the complex issue of homelessness.

This issue of homelessness is under the microscope. Supervisor Eric Mar, along with the backing of Aaron Peskin and David Campos introduced a ballot measure that would have tech firms pay for affordable housing and homeless services.

Mayor Ed Lee thinks it's a bad idea.

"When you start taxing jobs, that oftentimes is to me the opposite of the solutions are, and I think we need people to have good jobs, and we need to get more people jobs," Lee told KCBS.

The more progressive politicians believe high paid tech workers have inflated housing prices, resulting in a housing crisis. But Mayor Lee believes the homeless issue is more complex, with the causes including job loss, drug addiction, and mental health issues.

Lee says good work is being done, especially at the navigation center.

"The outreach teams, they really deserve a lot of kudos for having brought 550 people off the streets, and 83-percent end up in permanent housing," Lee

The proposed tech tax would raise an estimated $120 million. It needs six supervisor votes to get on the November ballot.

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