Commentary

Poll: San Francisco Voters Wary of New Taxes, Open to Privatization

The rest of the country may see the Bay Area as a bastion for outdated, fanciful statist thinking, but if a recent poll of San Francisco voters is accurate, then the old paradigm may be in need of a refresh.

A new poll by the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce finds that nearly two-thirds (64%) of city voters somewhat or strongly support contracting out more city services if it will reduce costs. In addition, either a plurality or majority of voters opposed increases in the sales, utility, or parcel taxes.

If there’s a dark lining on the white cloud, 61% opposed congestion pricing (at least the way the question was worded), which is an issue sure to garner more attention in the days ahead as the city continues to evaluate a variety of congestion pricing options with the support of Mayor Newsom.

Leonard Gilroy is vice president of government reform at Reason Foundation, a nonprofit think tank advancing free minds and free markets. He also serves as senior managing director of the Pension Integrity Project at Reason Foundation, which assists policymakers and other stakeholders in designing, analyzing and implementing public sector pension reforms.