Lyft drops $100k against SF tax to fund housing for homeless

Taking that principled stand, as always:

Ride-hail giant Lyft just dropped $100,000 to fight Proposition C, the ballot measure that would tax rich corporations to house 4,000 homeless San Franciscans. [...]

It's perhaps strange for a company whose CEO bragged to TIME Magazine in 2017 that his company is "woke," and especially odd since the often-vilified Uber, which has weathered myriad recent scandals, confirmed to On Guard they're not planning on donating for or against Proposition C. [...]

The donation joins Lyft with the likes of tech company Stripe, which has donated $400,000 to topple Prop C., and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who has infamously sparred publicly recently with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff over backing Prop. C. Dorsey now plans to spend $75,000 to fight the homeless measure, the New York Times reported Friday.

Salesforce CEO: tech billionaires hoard their money and won't help homeless
(Water, in other news, remains wet)

[Marc Benioff, the Salesforce CEO] intensified his criticisms of Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, saying: "He just doesn't want to give, that's all. And he hasn't given anything of consequence in the city." [...]

Benioff said by phone that he had expected Dorsey to stand against Prop C -- and that he did not anticipate the Twitter co-founder would change his mind or give back in a meaningful way. "That's not a surprise to me. There's lots of CEOs and companies and billionaires in that category. We have 70 billionaires in San Francisco [Bay Area region]. Not all of them are giving money away. A lot of them are just hoarding it. They're keeping it. That's just who they are and how they look at their money." [...]

Benioff also criticized Stripe, a payment platform and another major San Francisco tech firm opposing Prop C. The company claimed the measure lacked a "comprehensive plan" for spending in a recent op-ed and has also given more than $400,000 to a campaign fighting the measure, making it the largest donor.

Benioff scoffed at the funding from Stripe, which was founded in 2010 by brothers Patrick and John Collison, and was recently valued at $20bn.

"It's the most money they've ever given to anything in San Francisco, so that's exciting ... [Prop C] will be a direct tax on Stripe that they don't want to have to pay," he said. "Even though they've made $20bn dollars in San Francisco, they're not willing to give back at scale. Isn't that amazing?" [...]

Benioff has pledged to donate at least $2m to support Prop C, which could cost Salesforce up to $10m a year in taxes. [...]

Benioff said that Breed had recently asked him for an "immediate $8m" to fund a shelter in the city, raising questions about her claims that the city needs to focus on auditing the $300m it currently spends on homelessness instead of raising new money.

"She wants me to fund personally a homeless shelter in the city, because she's out of cash," he said. "That's evidence we need more money now."

Benioff:

CEO @jack created $50B in market cap in Twitter & Square & $6B personally in our city & received a special Mid Market Tax Break. Exactly much have his companies & personally given back to our city, our homeless programs, public hospitals, & public schools? Yes @OurHomeSF.

Hi Jack. Thanks for the feedback. Which homeless programs in our city are you supporting? Can you tell me what Twitter and Square & you are in for & at what financial levels? How much have you given to heading home our $37M initiative to get every homeless child off the streets?

Benioff is still totally cool with helping ICE imprison and deport children, though.

Might I also recommend The Broke-Ass Stuart 2018 Voting Guide.

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4 Responses:

  1. MattyJ says:

    Do the CEO's of Twitter and Square even go to their HQ's? Give them a break, they might not even realize homelessness is a thing, even though their payroll-tax-free businesses are in the thick of it. I wish everyone would stop picking on these poor, misunderstood tech bros.

  2. Eric says:

    Helping the homeless yes, allocating tax funds via voter propositions no thanks. It's weird that Lyft is weighing in on this one though.

  3. jwz says:

    Looks like this one was catnip for libertarians and/or bots, hooray. *plonk* I should figure out how to make WP auto-moderate any first-time-commenter.

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