A Lincoln County Republican legislator has introduced legislation allowing local politicians a little more leeway to raise taxes. Let’s look at Rep. Jason Saine’s HB 903:
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO GIVE COUNTIES INCREASED FLEXIBILITY WITHIN THEIR CURRENT AUTHORITY FOR LOCAL SALES AND USE TAX, TO ENABLE CITIES TO MAINTAIN THEIR LEVEL OF SERVICE BY PROVIDING A REPLACEMENT SOURCE OF REVENUE FOR THE REPEALED CITY PRIVILEGE LICENSE TAX, TO PROVIDE STABILIZATION OF FUTURE MUNICIPAL REVENUES, AND TO MAKE OTHER CHANGES TO LOCAL SALES AND USE TAX LAWS […]
“Stabilization of revenues” ? That sounds like the same weasel words they used to “sell” the gas tax “cut” that’s NOT REALLY a cut.
The current modus operandi is for localities to seek approval to even consider raising taxes on their residents. This bill appears to be a bone tossed to the League of Municipalities to talk them off the ledge they stepped out on following the House’s elimination of city privilege license taxes.
This Article is the County Sales and Use Tax Act. Article 43 of this Chapter, Article 46 of 15 this Chapter, and this Article give the counties of this State an opportunity to choose a flexible mix of sales tax revenues with which to meet their needs. A county may choose to use this source of revenue to finance local public transportation systems, as provided in Article 43 of 18 this Chapter, or for general purposes, as provided in this Article and Article 46 of this Chapter.
“§ 105-513.2. Levy. 20 (a) Authority. – The board of county commissioners may levy a local sales and use tax at the rate of one-quarter percent (0.25%) upon the occurrence of any of the following: (1) By resolution, if a majority of those voting in a special election held pursuant to subsection (b) of this section approve the levy of the local sales and use tax and the county has given not less than 10 days’ public notice. (2) By resolution, if no election has been held within five years under the provisions of subsection (b) of this section in which the tax has been defeated and the county has given not less than 10 days’ public notice of and held a public hearing. (b) Ballot Question. – The form of the question to be presented on a ballot for a special election concerning the levy of the tax authorized by this Article shall be: “[ ] FOR [ ] AGAINST Local sales and use tax at the rate of one-quarter percent (0.25%) in addition to the current local sales and use taxes.”
[…] A city council may, by resolution, levy a city sales and use tax at the rate of one-quarter percent (0.25%). This tax is in addition to any other State or local sales and use taxes. Before adopting a resolution under this section, the council must give at least 10 days’ public notice of 8 its intent to levy the tax and must hold a public hearing on the proposed levy. […]
A city may use the net proceeds of a tax levied under this Article for any public purpose.”
*Um, Viva la (conservative) revolucíon!*