Villaraigosa Pushes For Permanent Tax Holiday For LA Businesses

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa called upon City Council members on Tuesday to make permanent the policy of giving new businesses a three-year holiday from municipal taxes.

KNX 1070’s Claudia Peschiutta reports the mayor is under pressure from critics who blame the gross receipts tax is slowing down the city’s economic engine.

Villaraigosa told attendees at the United Chambers of Commerce Annual Mayors’ Luncheon at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills the move needs to be a priority for lawmakers.

“I want the city to take the position that the business tax holiday is a proven tool for bringing businesses to L.A. and generating jobs,” said Villaraigosa.

The tax holiday was introduced in 2010 and currently is set to expire in 2012.

Councilmen Mitch Englander, Tom LaBonge and Eric Garcetti, the council president, have recently called for extending the tax holiday until 2015.

Companies such as Blackline Software, Tom’s Shoes and Gensler have relocated to Los Angeles in part because
of the tax holiday, the mayor’s office said.

Under the policy, a business is exempted from paying the local business tax during its first three years in Los Angeles, thereby gaining what a city statement calls “the opportunity to establish a solid foundation for economic success.”

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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