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November 22, 2017, 02:14:48 pm
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Author Topic: 2017 SJR 11: Ad Valorem Tax for Cities  (Read 448 times)
cannon_fodder
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« on: February 02, 2017, 08:39:46 am »

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A Joint Resolution directing the Secretary of State to refer to the people for their approval or rejection a proposed amendment to the Oklahoma Constitution by adding a new Section 10C to Article X; authorizing incorporated cities and towns to levy ad valorem tax for specified purposes with voter approval; limiting amount of tax; authorizing Legislature to enact certain laws to implement provision; defining term; providing ballot title; and directing filing.
Full Text: http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/cf_pdf/2017-18%20INT/SRES/SJR11%20INT.PDF
Legislative page: http://www.oklegislature.gov/BillInfo.aspx?Bill=SJR11&Session=1700

It would allow a vote to enable cities to levy a 10 mils per dollar (1%) property tax to be levied by cities to pay for public safety, including operating costs.

Why it is limited to public safety instead of Oklahoma City trusting that local government understands their own needs and hear the voices of their citizens, who knows.  It would also make Tulsa's new sales tax for public safety more disappointing.  BUT - it is a step away from sales tax as a lifeline, a step towards local government control, and  step towards a more sound fiscal policy ---- I assume its doomed.


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TheArtist
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2017, 09:49:11 am »

Well its a start!
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PonderInc
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« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2017, 10:49:19 am »

Agree that cities should have the ability to tax themselves as they see fit, for whatever reasons they think matter. 

Here's the COT budget breakdown for 2016-2017 from the Executive Summary:
https://www.cityoftulsa.org/media/1429/section2-execsummary.pdf

Transportation and Public Works: $316,700,000
Public Safety: $180,200,000
Debt: $138,600,000
Administration: $76,200,000
Culture and Recreation: $36,300,000
Social and Economic: $20,000,000

Given that the largest line-item in our city budget is "Transportation and Public works (and given that our infrastructure is falling apart) it makes sense that cities might want to use property taxes for updating water, sewer, stormwater, roads, bridges, etc. That would also allow for some creative solutions to those problems.  I'm not policy wonk, but I could envision a municipal property tax system based on the SF of land you occupy as a basis for an infrastructure tax. (Since larger lot sizes equate to more feet of water pipes, sewer pipes, stormwater pipes, fire hydrants, road miles, etc).

However, if necessary, I'm OK with the public safety condition.  Public Safety makes up the second largest chunk of our municipal budget and sucks the budgetary life out of all other priorities.  One example of this is how our parks budget always takes a hit, because nobody wants to cut police and fire.  So, instead of fully-funded parks programming with staffed community centers, sports leagues and educational and fitness opportunities, we just shutter the park facilities and arrest kids who find themselves causing trouble on the streets.  Hmmmm.....

Basically, I'm for anything that takes us a step away from total reliance on sales taxes.  If this is the first baby step, I'm good with that.
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TeeDub
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« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2017, 08:42:11 pm »


Just following the trend here....

Why did asset management go from $15-16 million in 2012-2014 to $28-30 million in 2016-17?
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