91 Business Owners Looking to Pass the Buck (Figuratively, of Course)

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Contact your councilmembers ASAP and demand they support the HOMES tax!

At the time of writing this, Seattle is experiencing heavy rain and wind gusts of up to 39 miles per hour. The windchill factor makes the November air feel like 39°F. In the midst of this, 4,000 Seattleites make the streets their homes, unsheltered in a storm most of us will only experience as a crummy commute or an interruption in cable service.

City Councilmembers Mike O’Brien and Kirsten Harris-Talley, following the lead of the Transit Riders Union-led Housing For All coalition, of which Seattle DSA is member, have proposed the Housing, Outreach, and Mass-Entry Shelter (HOMES) tax, where Seattle businesses with revenues in excess of $5 million per year would pay 4.8 cents per hour per employee, or, what amounts to the sum of $100 per year per employee. Seattle could raise over $20 million new dollars which would go a long way toward a meaningful emergency response from a city that has made headlines declaring an emergency without ever acting like there’s been one.

Not so fast, says a letter sent to Seattle City Council, signed by 91 local business owners. “We need a compassionate and effective approach to solving homelessness,” reads the letter, making one wonder for whom the compassion’s being petitioned.

78 people have died this year while living unhoused. The shortest-route A to B answer to preventing this, which these 91 business owners claim to want, is providing housing to those unhoused. Who will pay for this, which the HOMES tax provides a step toward? Don’t look at us, say the business owners, passing the buck, demanding a “more inclusive and thoughtful approach” to the small burden asked of them compared to the suffering and plight of those excluded, those thought so little of, whose numbers keep increasing while businesses, like some of those listed below, keep booming and expanding. We thought you might like to know who they are.

Signatories of the anti-HOMES tax letter to Seattle City Council

Jim Miller, Millionair Club Charity
Jana deVarona, Fresh Ideas Inc.
Christian Snell, Downtown House Cleaning
Eric C. Paulus, Eric’s Garage Inc.
Vernon C. Bennett, CPA, VCB Consulting & Accounting Services, LLC
Jill Nelson, Hot Diggity! Pet Sitting
Roy Whitehead, Washington Federal
Lisa Michaud, Two Big Blondes Plus Size Consignment
Allegra Calder, BERK Consulting
Juergen Oswald, Hilton Seattle
Bruce P. Sprauge, Invisible Man Editing/ Roadmap Resumes
Timothy Tomlinson, Tomlinson Linen Service
Roz Edison, Marination
Katherine Dee, Glow Medispa
Diane Skwiercz, Streets Treats
Sally Shultz, Sally Schultz Co. Commercial Mortgage Broker
Tony Cameron, CPA, TL;DR Accounting LLC
Brian Dressel, Aurora Plumbing and Electric Supply, Inc.
Carol K. Nelson, Key Bank
Kevin & Cary Clark, Argosy Cruises
Chad Mackay, Fire & Vine Hospitality

Alan Alabastro, Alabastro Photography
Pat Callahan, Urban Renaissance Group LLC/Touchstone
Sarah J. Schmitt, EJK Accounting & Tax Services
Kent Hendricks, HB Management LLC
Jack McCullough, McCullough Hill Leary, PS
Craig Schafer, Hotel Ändra
Harley Brow, Harley F. Brow, CPA
Greg Johnson, Wright Runstad & Co.
Bill Weisfield, Elliott Bay Asset Solutions
Todd V. Biesold, Merlino Foods
Wil Lavaris, Buffalo Industries
Jim Spady, Dick’s Drive-In Restaurants
Jon and Shannon Felix, Avalon Glassworks
Tim Baker, San Fermo & Percy’s and Co.
Richard Hill, W Hotel
Judith Runstad, Foster Pepper
Harley Broe, Harley F. Broe, CPA
Tim Engle, Saltchuk
Ryan Suddendorf, Evergreens Salad
Jeff Garfield, Bedrooms & More
Michael Danford, Pike Grocery
Kayla Boehme, Pipe & Row
Stan Savage, Jr., A.F. Gilmore Co.
Howard Behar, Seattle Business Leader
Craig Dawson, Retail Lockbox, Inc.
Pamela Banks, Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle
Stephen Nevett, Dr. Stephen Nevett & Associates, PC
KC Franks, (Lux) Pot Shop
Courean Napolitano, Vixen Day Spa & Boutique
Todd Carden, Elliott Bay Brewing Co.
Claudia Meyer-Newman, Magnolia Village Studio
Deb Bluestein, Modele’s Inc.
Quentin Kuhrau, Unico Properties
Jeff Pelletier, Board & Vellum
Louise Little, University Book Store, Inc.
Stephen Fickenscher, ASF Insurance and Financial Services
Chris Tudor, Travelodge by Seattle Center
Mardee Austin, Mbelleish Designs
Taylor Hoang, Pho Cyclo Cafe
David Livingston, Windward Communications Group
Jennifer Cue, Jones Soda
Dr. Susanne L. Gee, Skin Doc Shop
David Watkins, Inn at the Market
H.S. Wright III, Seattle Hospitality Group
Bob Donegan, Ivar’s
Tom Douglas, Tom Douglas Restaurants
Bill Weise, Silver Cloud Hotel – Seattle Stadium
Jim Rowe, Consolidated Restaurants
Matt Galvin, Pagliacci
Carla Murray, Marriott International
Evelyne Rozner, Rozner Company
John Teutsch, Teutsch Partners, LLC

Austin Cohn, CBRE, Inc
Zahoor Ahmed, R.C. Hedreen Co.
Brian Canlis, Canlis
Rene Neidhart, Renaissance Seattle Hotel
Charles Stone, Fisher Marantz Stone
Bernie Griffin, 5th Avenue Theatre
Brian Zaugg, The Mediterranean Inn
Kent Hendricks, HB Management LLC
Jill Mackie, Vigor
Dan Coyne, Darigold
Kandie Jennings, Tom’s Automotive Service
Lara Olsha, The Sweet Spot
Lisa Power, Lisa Power Salon
Patrick Gordon, ZGF Architects, LLP
Christopher Gaynor, Capitol Hill Medicine
Charlie and Cindy Martin, Seattle Pinball Museum
Kevin Topping, Top Tax Services
Marilyn Boss, Marsh USA, Inc
Unless expressly stated, Dispatches do not necessarily reflect the views of Seattle DSA as an organization or its leadership.