Planning essential to cities & counties before half-cent sales tax sunsets in 2023
The half-cent sales tax was created to assist the state’s highway funding deficit and ultimately provides five sources of revenue distributed into city’s’ street funds from the state. It is a 10-year tax increase that is set to end in 2023. In a phone interview with Jay Whisker, a professional engineer and certified floodplain manager with MCE’s Transportation Department, he explained the need for planning, “It passed so the highway department could help fund their major road projects, but when they do that, because of the gasoline taxes set up, they get 70 percent, the counties get 15 percent, and cities get 15 percent. The way it’s broken up, cities get theirs by population. Counties get theirs a little differently. That’s why everybody is enjoying that money right now. It’s only got five years left and the governor is looking to find ways to keep it going.” He continued, “I just want people to understand that the money is not going to last forever. If you’ve got a project that you’ve been looking at now is the time to do that or save up for it.” Whisker cautioned city managers, “Don’t hire an employee based on it because in five years you may not have the money.” In the following article, Whisker explains the halfcent sales tax and the need for future planning .
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