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Seattle Passes Crazy Business Tax

Starbucks blasted the Seattle City Council after a controversial tax law was unanimously passed on Monday.

The Seattle City Council approved a version of the "head tax" plan, a progressive tax on big businesses to help fund affordable housing and combat homelessness in the city.

Starbucks executive John Kelly said that the city has failed to adequately address the needs of homeless families and does not believe that they will be able to make housing affordable.

"This City continues to spend without reforming and fail without accountability, while ignoring the plight of hundreds of children sleeping outside. If they cannot provide a warm meal and safe bed to a five year-old child, no one believes they will be able to make housing affordable or address opiate addiction. This City pays more attention to the desires of the owners of illegally parked RVs than families seeking emergency shelter," John Kelly, senior vice president, Global Public Affairs & Social Impact at Starbucks, said in a statement.

About 3% of all Seattle businesses will be affected by the "head tax" plan according to Council estimates.

Under the tax, Starbucks, Amazon and others will pay $275 a year for every full-time employee working in Seattle for the next five years. The Council estimates the tax will raise roughly $47 million a year on average.

Amazon also issued a statement criticizing the new tax policy.

"The city does not have a revenue problem — it has a spending efficiency problem. We are highly uncertain whether the City Council's anti-business positions or its spending inefficiency will change for the better," Amazon Vice President Drew Herdener said in a statement.

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