Pending Stock Option Tax Legislation in SF

There is an interesting issue I just learned about through the sfnewtech newsletter. I checked with Myles about simply reposting the message in full, because I think he superbly describes the issue and the steps you can take to influence the result.

Learn more by reading the full post…

Dear SF New Tech friends –

We need your help to deal with a critical issue for the San Francisco tech community.

Right now, San Francisco is the only major city in the United States that taxes stock options, and there are two competing bills at City Hall to address the issue.

One (sponsored by Supervisor Mark Farrell) would permanently stop this tax – private companies will not pay anything going forward, and existing public companies would be capped at their current levels.

Another (sponsored by Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi) would only create a 6-year trial period, where public companies will still be subject to the tax, and private companies will still have to pay up to $750,000 a year once they go public.

We need to support Supervisor Mark Farrell’s legislation — this is VERY important to the technology community in San Francisco.

Please send the email below to the Mayor and the Supervisors at these email addresses:;

If you’re a registered voter that lives in San Francisco, you can also visit the Save SF Startups page on Votizen: and submit your letter of support. If you’re not a voter or live outside of the city, you can tweet your support with the #sfstartups hashtag.

We also need phone calls to the supervisors – go here for phone numbers, call the supervisors, and ask them to support Supervisor Farrell’s stock option legislation.

Finally, forward this email to everyone you know (especially other entrepreneurs who should care about this issue) and ask them to send the same email.


Have a great weekend!
– Myles

Myles Weissleder
Founder, SF New Tech
The largest, longest-running, and most-loved tech event in the Bay Area // @sfnewtech // @sfnewtechjobs

Dear Mayor Lee and Supervisors,

I am glad to see City Hall is focusing on creating a solution to the stock options issue. As a member of the San Francisco technology community, I strongly urge you to support Supervisor Mark Farrell’s stock option legislation.

I support Supervisor Farrell’s proposal for these reasons:

1. City Hall has to create a permanent solution to the problem, or tech companies will continue to evaluate leaving San Francisco. A temporary solution sends the message that San Francisco is not interested in creating long-term solutions for the local economy.

2. Private and public companies should both be treated equally – it is the only fair solution. Supervisor Farrell’s legislation ensures that both private and public companies benefit – not only are private companies thinking about leaving San Francisco, but larger, public companies are growing their employees outside of San Francisco. I want these jobs to stay in San Francisco – and Supervisor Farrell’s legislation will do just that.

3. Supervisor Farrell’s legislation insures that San Francisco’s general fund will not face any additional budget deficit. City Hall won’t collect more taxes on stock options, but his legislation is designed so that current levels of tax revenue from stock options will stay constant.

Supervisor Farrell’s legislation strikes the right balance in creating incentives to keep tech companies in San Francisco, while protecting the City from adverse budget impacts. Our local economy is at stake – please focus on the long-term, and support Supervisor Farrell’s legislation!!

[Insert name and address]






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