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Committee Against Measure E Launches Campaign Against Parcel Tax

The Committee Against Measure E has launched its campaign to defeat Alameda Unified School District’s parcel tax, Measure E.

Ed Hirshberg, an Alameda commercial property owner announced the campaign yesterday. Hirshberg is a party to the Borikas v. Alameda Unified School District lawsuit over the last AUSD parcel tax, Measure H.

“This tax is illegal and unfair because it does not tax all property owners equally,” said Hirshberg. “The tax isn’t even fair across commercial property owners – large property owners pay a lower tax per square foot than smaller property owners,” he added.

Under the tax, a commercial property owner with, for example, a 60,000 square foot parcel would pay $7,800 per year, or $0.13 per sq ft, while a larger property owner with a 100,000 square foot parcel would pay the maximum, capped by the ballot measure language, $9,500 per year, or $0.10 per sq ft. Residential property owners would pay a flat $659/year, more than twice the $309/year in taxes that Measure E would replace.

Hirshberg asserts that Measure E is an illegal “split-roll” tax, like 2008’s Measure H. Hirshberg figures that if Measure E passes, the school district will be sued again. Action Alameda News previously reported that the School District has already spent over $200,000 on legal fees defending lawsuits over Measure H.

The committee released a YouTube campaign video as well:

Hirshberg says that campaign organizing documents were filed with the Alameda City Clerk’s office last week. As of last Friday, at close-of-business, the Alameda City Clerk did not have on record campaign filings for Alamedans Protecting Learning at Underfunded Schools (APLUS), Hirshberg’s chief opponent in the campaign. Political action committees are typically required to file campaign documents with the city they are active in.

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