Commissioners approve ballot measure to extend 2010 income tax increase to fix streets
Caroline MacGregor January 28, 2014 | WGVU “maintenance and
Grand Rapids Deputy City Manager, Eric DeLong, who says the vote was
unanimous. If voters approve the measure on May 6th, more than 9 and a half million dollars a year
will be raised to fix streets, sidewalks and right of way improvement and
Last year, a “Sustainable Streets Task Force” told city
officials that unless something is done soon, the condition of city's streets
will continue to deteriorate rapidly. Acting on that advice, commissioners want
to extend the 2010 income tax increase for another 15 years. The increase was set to
expire in June of 2015.
Eric Larson, with the Kent County Taxpayers Alliance, an
organization that markets itself as promoting transparency and accountability
in local government, says Grand Rapids is one of the highest taxed regions in
the county. He says his organization prefers to see November elections due
to maximum participation and less likelihood to run the question a second time.
DeLong explains there is a lot of coordination that needs to take
place to foster a smooth transition with tax firms.
DeLong says they are saving money by holding the
election in May. The cost of a mid term change would be 125 thousand dollars.
Commissioners say the
legislature needs to figure out the best way to proceed but anticipates state allocation
of road funds within the year.
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