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CA sales tax rose 1 cent on the dollar

April 1, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
The taxes are piling up fast, and residents in Pico Rivera said they didn't realize it would all add up to the city having the highest sales-tax percentage in California. Pico Rivera shares a 10.25 percent sales tax with South Gate.Business owners in Pico Rivera said they are worried they will lose customers. They think with the new tax hike, customers will go to other cities where they can buy big-tickets items like TVs, cars and appliances for a lower rate.

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  • It is a trio of tax hits for Pico Rivera. There's a 1 percent increase in local sales tax, 1 percent statewide bump and a half-cent hike that will be imposed by the county, beginning in July.

    Voters overwhelmingly passed the local tax last year, but are now stuck with a financial burden because they didn't anticipate the state and counties additional taxes.

    "There's a lot of people struggling," said Denisa Mota from Pico Rivera.

    "That's why there's a lot of homeless people, because they can't get jobs, and then they're making the taxes go up. That's even worse," she said.

    Some say people in the largely blue-collar suburb can't afford all the new taxes, while others say the city needs the money in the tough economy.

    "One percent, it's not a lot, 1 percent. If it's for a good purpose, it'll help," said Gabriel Marquez from Pico Rivera.

    Pico Rivera will bring in double the amount of tax revenue it did before the hike, and with the budget deficit at nearly $5 million, city officials said they need the extra money.

    Eyewitness News Reporters Lisa Hernandez and Carlos Granda contributed to this report.


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