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Supervisor Preston Wants to Double Real Estate Tax for SF’s Most Wealthy

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Photo of Dean Preston from 48Hills

Dean Preston has always been on the side of renters in San Francisco. Before being elected to the Board of Supervisors he founded and ran Tenants Together, California’s only statewide renters’ rights organization. He was also instrumental in getting 2018’s Proposition F passed, which gave anyone in San Francisco facing eviction access to a lawyer. Preston is now stepping up during what may be the most precarious moment renters have faced within an already harrowing decade.

On Monday May 4th, Supervisor Dean Preston announced a ballot measure for November 2020 that will double the tax on the sale of properties in San Francisco valued at $10 million or more. The funds from that tax will be used for mortgage and rent relief in the short term and, in the long run, for building more affordable housing.

In a post on Facebook, Preston said, “We can’t sit by and wait for a wave of Covid-19 fueled speculation to displace more San Francisco tenants and small property owners. The way we stop speculation is to make the wealthiest pay more of their fare share, and to make sure those funds are used for long term housing stability.” The proposal, if passed, could bring in over $100 million a year.

As the San Francisco Examiner reported earlier today, “The new revenue would go toward buying affordable housing sites that nonprofits can manage, as well as to set up a fund to encourage landlords to waive the back rent tenants owe after falling behind due to income loss caused by the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.”

The measure would work by increasing the real estate transfer tax for buildings sold between $10 million and $25 million from 2.75 percent to 5.5 percent, and for buildings sold for $25 million or more from 3 percent to 6 percent. Both commercial and residential real estate would subject to this tax increase.

Joshua Sabatini at The Examiner went on to report that, to get on the November ballot, the measure needs six votes from the Board of Supervisors or four signatures. Once on the ballot, it would need over 50 percent of the vote to pass.

Learn more about the new measure right here.

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle, "an SF cult hero":SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.