Search The Tattler

Friday, October 14, 2011

Oakland Tribune: Pixar Will Pay Their Taxes

Oakland Tribune Says Emeryville's Measure C Will Force Pixar To Pay Their Taxes

The editorial staff at the Oakland Tribune thinks if Emeryville voters simply pass Measure C on November 8th, Pixar/Disney Corporation will be brought to its knees.  Pass the measure and Pixar will have no choice they say; they'll be flummoxed and confounded.  It'll be a shock and awe of justice rendered by Emeryville voters against the biggest animation studio in the world. 
Give us a break.

As for Measure F, the Tribune thinks that only Emeryville can't save money with an outsourced legal department.  Of all the cities in the Bay Area that have outsourced their legal departments, all have saved money.  In Emeryville though, strangely, it'll cost us 71% more... if you believe City Hall and its entrenched bureaucracies, which apparently the editorial staff at the Tribune does.

And Measure D: The Tribune says the city council wisely placed the business tax cap raise on the ballot by rejecting calls to eliminate the cap...obviously the Tribune editorial staff has not been paying attention to Emeryville.  The call to eliminate the tax cap came from THE CITY COUNCIL ITSELF, before they reversed themselves and did Pixar's bidding.

The Oakland Tribune, with its crack Emeryville news division (not) renders its decisions.

It looks like someone in Emeryville has gotten to the editorial staff at the Oakland Tribune (again).

Re-printed from the Oakland Tribune:

Oakland Tribune editorial: Emeryville voters 

should pass Measures C, D, reject Measure F

Oakland Tribune editorial
© Copyright 2011, Bay Area News Group
Updated: 10/11/2011 06:58:45 PM PDT

Emeryville voters will face three measures on their Nov. 8 ballot.

We urge support for Measures C and D, which would modestly
increase the city's revenues from business license fees. And voters
should soundly reject Measure F, a petty and misguided initiative
spearheaded by one councilman seeking to force his colleagues to
contract out for attorney services.

The two business license fee measures would make three key changes
to the levies. First, Measure C would increase the tax rate from 0.08
percent of gross receipts to 0.10 percent. That's reasonable when one
considers that the neighboring cities of Berkeley and Oakland charge
0.18 percent and 0.12 percent, respectively.

Measure C would also change the rules to stop one of the cities biggest
businesses, Pixar Studios, from avoiding the tax. After the company was
acquired by Disney in 2006, it stopped paying the fee, instead shifting
all the receipts to the parent company in Burbank. Pixar should be
paying its fair share like all other businesses.

Measure D would raise the cap on the tax from the current $117,000
to $300,000 a year. The change is expected to affect three businesses,
Pixar, Novartis and LeapFrog. The City Council, when placing the
measure on the ballot, wisely rejected calls to eliminate the cap to
match Berkeley and Oakland.

We are not anxious to see new business taxes in these tough
financial times. But we feel the changes are reasonable and that
the city has taken other belt-tightening steps.

It has trimmed its budget by about 10 percent and, unlike many cities,
required its employees to pay their full share of their pensions
contributions. It has also reduced pension benefits, and city costs,
for new employees.

At the same time, voters should oppose Measure F, the misguided
initiative spearheaded by Councilman Ken Bukowski. It's clear to
us that Bukowski, who at times has been ethically challenged, is
now unhappy with the city attorney and other members of the City
Council who have questioned his behavior.

Bukowski seems to forget that the city attorney is accountable to the
entire council, not just to him. Unable to get the answers and
cooperation he wants from the city attorney, Bukowski is trying to
eliminate the lawyer's job by proposing Measure F, which would
force the city to contract out for legal services.

Worse, Bukowski wants to make the city attorney accountable to
the city manager, not to the council. That's absurd. A city attorney
must be directly accountable to the council to serve as a check
on the city manager.

Bukowski offers no evidence for his claim that Measure F would
save money. And, as we have witnessed in other East Bay
communities, there is no evidence that contracting for city attorney
services provides better advice.

Voters should reject this ridiculous idea.

emeryville: measures c, d, f


  1. This is a reasonable critique of all the ballot measures.

    Funny how you applauded the Tribune editorial Board when they came out against Measure J, but that you disagree you criticize their coverage of Emeryville. Why wasn't that an issue before? Seem like the Trib is just being fair.

  2. Sorry Mr Anonymous, a reasonable critique would have basis in fact. The editor of the Oakland Tribune can endorse Sarah Palin if they want but they need to cite factual evidence as to what informed their endorsement.

    Funny how editors of newspapers can sometimes do a good job and sometimes they can do a bad job. Funny also how the Tattler can be counted on to consistently advocate in Emeryville resident's interest, applauding those who do likewise and chastising those same people who later advocate against the resident's interest. It's all quite funny.

  3. I posted a reply to the Oakland Tribune's editorial using my Facebook account (to identify myself) and you can read it at the bottom of the original Oakland Tribune editorial at their webpage:

    I also posted my reply on my blog, conditionemeryville, which you can access simply by clicking on my name at the top of this post.

    It looks like Ruth, Nora, and Jac (Jacqueline) are taking the low road in this campaign. There has actually been a "negative" committee formed by them to attack Ken and me and their first mailing arrived today. A nicely funded piece, all color. I can hardly wait to see the donors list on the 460 filing - the Chamber of Commerce via EMPAC pledged to not run or support a negative campaign, but someone has to pay for a slick piece like that.

    I wanted to campaign independently of Ken, and I believe I have been doing that. Instead of reciting platitudes and trying not to make enemies and lose voters like the other candidates, I have been very frank about what bothers me about Emeryville politics, policies, and practices on my blog and in my comments on the Tattler and Secret News.

    But in light of the new, very negative attacks on Ken I feel that I will need to comment in his defense in the near future.

    It's funny that I, a relative newcomer to the community (6 years is "new" by Emeryville old-timer standards), have to take up this laboring oar on behalf of one of our 24 year Council Members (the only one besides Nora). It's sad that Nora, Ruth, and Jac feel the only way for Jac to win is by cutting Ken off at the knees.

    Well Ken is a real survivor, and from what I have seen of him this last month he is a true survivor, a true fighter. Do I think he has made mistakes and given the wrong impression in the past? Yes, but nothing so important it can not be forgiven and rehabilitated, and imho ALL the personal issues have already been rehabilitated. When he has the financial means he has pledged that he will also resolve the purely financial issues. In the meantime I have never, in my life, seen anyone so dedicated to public service as him.

    I stand by Ken. He has been there for so many of us in the past in this community. He has never been afraid to take an independent position when he has heard from affected residents and businesses. He never sugarcoats a "no" if he can't help you, and he has a very high track record of honoring his promises.

  4. and it sure helps when a council candidate loans ken $2,000 to run his modest campaign.
    independent? i don't think so.

  5. Shirley, I loaned Ken $2,000 for his campaign when it became apparent he is being frozen out of donations by the old crony/new crony network. A small sum compared to the $20,000 or so spent in the last election, but enough to get the word out in at least one mailing.

    What I'd like to know is who is financing the committee that sent out the negative campaign materials this weekend? Who cares so much - and who can afford - to mail out a four page, full color campaign piece that is ostensibly against Measure F but spends no time discussing the pros and cons of that measure - just calls Ken "corrupt" and calls for his removal from office.

    In the fine print, the Committee that apparently published this negative material includes me as one of their targets. So much for Mayberry. I guess the only new candidates that are welcome to run have to be endorsed by Nora and Ruth. I trust the voters will make up their own minds.

  6. There is really an awful lot of money being spent to defeat Prop f. Who is it that paying?