Daniel Mufson | Jan 18, 2015
There will be those who will challenge any attempts we make to rain in growth by declaring, as Dillon and others have, that the economic well-being of the county depends upon the wineries/AG. I think it is important that we dig into the numbers.
The county's annual budget for 2014-15 is here
(for those numbed by numbers jump to the pie charts on pages 26-27)
All of the county's financial reports are here
(for those who just can't get enough numbers)
When I look at the county’s budget I see 25% comes from property,sales and other tax. I guess that the tourists bring in $$ via the TOT which I suppose is “other.” 25% comes from intergovernmental revenue [state funds?]?
So, prior to the loosening of the WDO how much tax revenue came from winery sales? how much now comes from DTC? how much comes if someone in another state orders on line from a mega corp such as Constellation who is headquartered in NY? And most important, what would happen if we never approved another winery?
How does employment at the wineries affect the county budget? Most get paid minimum wages and live elsewhere.
So from a cold numbers perspective, how does the county benefit from the wineries? What if the wineries made shoes would the $$ change? If the land were sold for housing wouldn’t the county “make more” in property taxes? I think we need to be clear on the financial arguments.