Temporary Sales Tax sunset question to the candidates

“If elected, you will serve on the city council when the temporary transaction privilege (sales) tax ends in 2014. How do you propose the City of Tempe address the revenue reduction that will occur when the tax ends?”

Eric Emmert

 

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Comments

  1. There is a reason it’s called a “temporary” sales tax and those that formulated this tax promised voters that the tax would expire. I would honor that commitment. Budgets are not static instruments, obviously, and every budget year is a dynamic exercise in balancing what is funded and what is not coupled with recognition of what is happening with our various revenue streams. What is NOT negotiable are commitments to taxpayers.

  2. Interesting that you should bring this issue up. The tax that was originally proposed was for a permanent sales tax increase with no sunset. I was at the meeting and was the first person from the audience to speak out against a long term sales tax increase to fill a temporary shortfall. I spent a great deal of time speaking and lobbying to council members. In the end, the Council voted on a permanent tax increase. I, and others, continued to lobby and at the following meeting the Council brought up the issue again and changed the passed proposal to include sunset language.

    The Council has already cut over $20 million from the budget, however, this is more work to do. The fact of the matter is, a leaner city government is always better. The fact of the matter also is that we are still in the middle of a recession and revenue is down off of historic numbers. I would consider, if there was a good showing of additional cuts, putting to the voters an extension of the sales tax increase for another 2 years. However, that is only because of the seriousness with which the budget has been cut. The day will come when this tax increase must go away. That may be in 2014, but I can not, with 100% certainty, say that will be the case. However, if it is extended for 2 years, it would need to be re-voted on by the people of Tempe.

    To see a video of me speaking out against the sales tax increase at Council, go to http://kolbygranville.com/?p=522

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