TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - The Pima County Sales Tax Advisory Committee has scheduled seven public meetings around the county in December and January to the give the public a chance to provide feedback on whether the Board of Supervisors should adopt a countywide sales tax. State law allows county boards of supervisors to enact up to a half-cent-per-dollar sales tax via a unanimous board vote.
The Board of Supervisors created the committee to answer three questions:
- Should the Board adopt a half-cent sales tax for the purposes of accelerating road repair throughout the County, including within cities and towns?
- Should the Board use any portion of the revenues from a sales tax to reduce County primary property taxes?
- Should the sales tax be permanent or temporary?
The public meeting schedule is:
- Dec. 7 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Cienega High School (Student Union) 12775 E Mary Ann Cleveland Way
- Dec. 14 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. (Hearing follows the Sales Tax Advisory Committee meeting) at Kirk-Bear Canyon Library 8959 E. Tanque Verde Road
- Jan. 9 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. (Hearing follows the Sales Tax Advisory Committee meeting) at El Pueblo Activity Center (Multi-purpose Room) Richard Ortiz Barker Regional Complex
- 101 W. Irvington Road
- Jan. 10 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Quincie Douglas Center 1575 E. 36th St.
- Jan. 17 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Las Campanas Social Center (Cottonwood Room) 565 W. Belltower Drive in Green Valley
- Jan. 17 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Picture Rocks Community Center 5615 N. Sanders Road
- Jan. 23 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Wheeler Taft Abbett Sr. Library 7800 N. Schisler Drive
If members of the public are unable to attend any of the public meetings, they can still provide the committee feedback at www.pima.gov/salestax and clicking on the feedback link. The feedback link asks the same three questions the Sales Tax Committee has been charged with answering.
Pima County is the only county in Arizona without a sales tax, which is why the county's primary property tax rate is the highest in the state. The sales tax could be used to replace property tax revenue, lowering property taxes throughout the county. However, the impetus for the Sales Tax Committee was to determine if it is a better source of revenue to pay for over $1 billion in road repairs regionwide. The county is currently using a new property tax to pay for local road repairs, but it only raises about $20 million a year. The full half-cent sales tax allowed by the state would raise about $80 million a year.