Santa Fe Silliness

Few cities are so willing to adopt senseless and economically-harmful policies as Santa Fe. Whether the issue is the dreaded toilet exchange program or the incredibly inflated $9.50 an hour minimum wage, Santa Fe is on the loony left.
Now, some city councilors would like to push the city even further down the road to economic foolishness. The latest proposals are for a two cent tax on soda pop and a 1 percent hike in the city’s gross receipts tax. The plan is to use the money for a variety of open space and child development initiatives.
While the soda tax may not be as big or economically-harmful as a 1% increase in the gross receipts, it is patently unfair and unnecessarily targets one group of people – soda drinkers – to pay for something that most of them will never benefit from. Besides, as soon as a soda tax is levied, can taxes on burgers, pizza, and ice cream be far behind?
Of course, raising the gross receipts tax — especially by a full penny — will do more economic harm than the soda tax. Santa Fe already has the heaviest gross receipts tax burden of any major (25,000 people or bigger) city in New Mexico, a one-cent increase would give the city an astounding 8.625 percent gross receipts tax rate. The new rate would be an astounding 25 percent greater than the rate charged in Albuquerque. Check this table for gross receipts tax rates statewide.
While it may not happen overnight, eventually Santa Fe’s economy and even its tourist industry will begin to suffer from these absurd policies. After all, most wealthy people didn’t get that way by carelessly wasting money. Eventually, even Santa Fe’s tax burden may cause tourists and part-year residents to look elsewhere.