Archive for Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Bonner approves April sales tax mail ballot

November 24, 2015

The city of Bonner Springs will ask voters to consider maintaining its current sales tax rate in a mail ballot election in April.

The Bonner Springs City Council Monday approved a mail ballot sales tax election on April 12 for voters to determine if the city can take a quarter-cent sales tax approved to pay off bonds for construction of the library and use it for general fund items.

Voters approved the library sales tax in 2006 and it will sunset in December of next year. It raises about $467,500 annually.

Currently, the city has a 1 percent General Fund sales tax and two other special sales taxes, a quarter cent for emergency services and a quarter cent that formerly paid off the aquatic center. Voters recently approved changing the aquatic center sales tax to a capital improvements sales tax.

The state allows the city to levy up to 2 percent in sales tax for the General Fund and up to 1 percent of special sales taxes. So if voters approve this measure, the city will have the same tax rate, but 1.25 percent will go to the general fund and .5 percent will be special sales taxes.

With the state’s 6.5 percent sales tax rate and Wyandotte County’s 1 percent sales tax, Bonner Springs’s overall sales tax rate will continue to be 9.25 percent. This is compared to 8.5 percent in Basehor, 9 percent in Edwardsville and most of Kansas City, Kan., 9.35 percent in Shawnee, and between 9.225 and 11.125 percent in special taxing areas of Kansas City, Kan., like the Legends.

The council previously discussed maintaining the sales tax in August. They noted that the state legislature soon will require an election for cities and counties to raise sales taxes, which could cause problems as a city tries to budget for the next year.

On Monday, council members said they would like to use the general funds generated by continuing the sales tax for maintenance of the pool and library and continued improvement for streets and sidewalks.

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