Saturday, January 28, 2012

El Segundo, Chevron at odds over oil company's taxes - latimes.com

El Segundo, Chevron at odds over oil company's taxes - latimes.com

Doug Willmore wasn't on the job long as El Segundo's city manager before discovering just how deep the town's loyalty runs to the oil giant that put it on the map.

After the city began discussing a big tax increase for the Chevron oil refinery a few months ago, he walked out of City Hall to find a note on the windshield of his car.

"This is a Chevron town and we owe our existence to them and should be grateful. Get that through your head," it read.

The note ended: "Beat it!!!!!!!"

After decades of mostly prosperous times for the city and the oil company, El Segundo is having a falling-out with its longtime benefactor.

A majority of the City Council thinks Chevron should pay an additional $10 million a year in taxes — about three times what it pays now. But the tax push has stirred strong emotions in the town, which was formed a century ago when Chevron built its second refinery there. El Segundo ("The Second One" in Spanish) gets its name from the refinery that overlooks the Pacific Ocean and stretches more than a mile inland.

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