Business group endorses Proposition 30 tax measure


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Gov. Jerry Brown got a boost for his tax plan this week when a key Bay Area business group backed Proposition 30, which would raise upper-income and sales taxes.

The endorsement from the Bay Area Council, which represents about 200 high-tech and other companies in the San Francisco Bay Area, was a rare nod from a business association for the measure.


While the governor has raised millions from individual businesses for the proposal, he lost significant business support when he abandoned his effort to extend a series of taxes hiked by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and opted to find his own mix of taxes to close the state’s budget gap.

While many of those groups backed Brown’s 2011 plan, they have remained neutral on Proposition 30.

But Brown has maintained a close relationship with the council. He chose the group’s recent meeting to announce the opening of a new trade office in Shanghai, and is relying on the group to help fund the opening of the office.

“Increased taxes are very difficult for a business group to support, but our member CEOs, who will bear the burden of much of these taxes, want to do what they think is right for California,” said a statement from Jim Wunderman, president and CEO of the Bay Area Council. “Increased taxes pose their own drag on business and the economy, but the alternative is not acceptable.’


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-- Anthony York in Sacramento