Unions Throw a Fit, Taxpayers Take the Hit...

In a union city like Philadelphia, it really shouldn’t come as a shock that when unions pitch fits, politicians’ knees buckle, and taxpayers end up paying the price.

A few months ago, we posted on Philadelphia’s proposed soda tax that drew union protests by the Teamsters.  To be clear, we also believe the soda tax idea is a stupid idea–sort of like tea taxes were in 1773–as are most taxes today that go to pay for bloated governments.

However, instead of curbing the gorging at the public trough that has caused municipal budgets nationwide to collapse and led to public workers’ demands to raise taxes, the Philadelphia City Council has capitulated to union demands once again.  Now, in yet another union shakedown, the residents of Philadelphia will be seeing their property (among other) taxes go up.

If you live in Philadelphia, higher property taxes and a fee for trash pickup may be two things you’ll pay for next year.

Philadelphia City Council approved Mayor Michael Nutter’s $3.9 billion budget for 2011 with a vote Thursday evening.

To fill in a $150 million budget gap, officials made several tax increases, the most notable being a 9.9-percent jump in property taxes, officials told NBC Philadelphia. That increase will only last for two years.

The 9.9 percent temporary tax hike has to get final approval from council next week.

Council also passed measures that will institute a new, yearly $300 fee for trash pickup from small businesses, duplexes and apartment buildings and a tax on cigars and smokeless tobacco.

One high-profile tax that wasn’t included in the approved budget was the proposed soda tax.

The measure — which would have put a tax of 2-cent per ounce on all soda and sugary drinks sold within the city limits — was both lauded and detested by residents.

Once again, taxpayers take a hit all because unions threw a fit.

“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.” Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776

For more news and views on today’s unions, go to LaborUnionReport.com.


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