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Economic anxieties complicate Palo Alto’s march toward business tax | News

As Palo Alto marches ahead toward placing a business tax to the November ballot, city leaders are bracing for an onslaught of opposition from local corporations, developers and regional organizations like the Silicon Valley Leadership group.

The anti-tax campaign has already begun with flyers and social media ads, some of which quote local business executives and argue that this is not the right time for a new tax. But while this message has been a mantra of sorts for opponents of the tax over past five years, it has taken on increasing resonance at a time of rising of inflation and a shaky economy.

A new survey from the city’s polling firm FM3 Research captures the public’s growing feeling of pessimism and uncertainty. Conducted between May 22 and May 26, the survey shows that for the first time in recent years, a plurality of responders — 39% — said they believe things in Palo Alto are going in the wrong direction, while 36%…

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