A few weeks ago, I wrote about how the City of San Jose went after my son for a business license because he’d reported his modest non-employee income to the IRS and the State. Despite multiple protestations from me and our city councilman (and the opinion of everyone else who heard of the ridiculous decision), they held fast that Neil should pay. And so, I wrote a $76 check for 2011 and 2012, sent it to the city, and had Neil pay me back.
By all rights, Neil should get his money back with an apology that the city shames itself. Note that as it rapes its productive citizens, San Jose has cut libraries to half-time, put its police force on a skeletal crew, cancelled its Fourth of July and Cinco de Mayo festivals, and complains it doesn’t have money to fix the roads while at the same time maintaining a luxury resort and sponsoring tennis tournaments.
But what did Neil get besides the apology he (and other people who earn a few hundred bucks a year doing odds and ends of work) deserved? He got another BILL! After having taken 2 weeks’ worth of earnings from my 15 year old son, they now want him to pay another $38 for his “business.” Well, guess what, San Jose, he’s not in business any more. They need to be informed of this, or else they will hound him and work to extort more money from him with no proof. Oh, heck, even with the information, they’ll probably still hound him just as they did Peter, trying to hit him up for back business license money and penalties for years he was not in San Jose.
So instead of the money they were greedily grasping for, like a junkie for his next fix, the city finance department got this note:
In response to your venal bill for my 15-year-old son’s “business” for 2013: he is no longer in “business.” His “business” is closed as of 12/31/2012. Thanks a lot for destroying a young man’s wish to work. Suck hard on the money you extorted from for having done paid work for his parents in 2011 and 2012 because you’re not going to see more.
Totally agreed!!! This is ridiculous… I got bit too for miniscule income. Yes, I’ll file for the exemption too, but just money down the tubes. According to the City web site, this business tax “program” generates only $11 million a year in _revenue_. I wonder how much (if anything) the city nets after paying out all the salaries, retirement benefits, office space, mailings, credit card fees, etc. used to “administer” this. I bet it’s losing money…. and don’t say “oh, then just raise the price.”