Letters to the Editor

Jessica Son: Instead of using sales taxes to fund libraries, we need to fix Prop 13

Re “Library memories merit renewal of tax for future” (Page 3A, June 1): In his article, columnist Jeff Jardine argues that a tax renewal for libraries is necessary to keep them up to par. While libraries are crucial to our communities, we should not have to nickel and dime working families to keep public services in good condition, especially when the biggest corporations are getting away with underpaying billions of dollars in taxes yearly. This tax renewal is only a temporary fix that focuses on one public service. What we need is a permanent solution that addresses many other struggling public services, including our schools.

A better solution is to reform the commercial side of Proposition 13. Though Prop 13 was sold to protect homeowners, what most people don’t know is that corporations benefit the most. For example, Chevron profits $500 million a year from Prop 13. Reassessing commercial property at market value will generate $9 billion a year of reliable revenue for California to fund education and public services. This amount of money can dramatically improve California’s public services and ensure that ordinary citizens no longer have to tax themselves to keep places like their libraries in good condition.

Jessica Son, Berkeley

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