Monday, August 6, 2012

Twelve of Carroll County’s 13 mayors are backing the City of Carroll’s renewal of a local-option sales tax Tuesday.

Carroll Mayor Adam Schweers has been outspoken in support of the measure, and Schweers is now joined by the mayors from 11 other cities who have signed a letter encouraging Carroll residents to vote “yes” on Tuesday.

“The local-option sales tax has allowed us to continue to provide services at current levels and in many cases without asking for more property taxes,” the 11 mayors say in the letter to the citizens of Carroll. “In fact, many of us have reduced property taxes in our cities because of the positive impact of the local-option sales tax. With the state cutting the funding to local cities we would be in bad shape without the local option sales tax.”

The sales tax is collected countywide and disbursed to cities and the county based on a state-mandated formula that takes into consideration population and other factors.

Seventy-nine percent of the taxable sales in 2011 — $214 million — were made in the City of Carroll. The breakdown in other cities for FY 2011 is as follows: Manning, $13 million, 5 percent; Coon Rapids, $9 million, 3.4 percent; Glidden, $8 million, 2.9 percent; Breda, $8 million, 3.2 percent; Templeton, $3.8 million, 1.4 percent; Arcadia, $5.3 million, 2 percent; Halbur, $4 million, 1.5 percent; Dedham, $1.4 million, .5 percent; and the unincorporated area in the county plus Willey, Lidderdale, Ralston and Lanesboro, $2.8 million, 1 percent.

Total taxable sales in Carroll County in FY 2011 stood at $270 million.

Forty-two percent — $1.3 million — of the sales tax collected in the county went to the City of Carroll in FY 2011. The breakdown for distribution of funds to other cities in the county is as follows: Manning, $191,000, 6 percent; Coon Rapids, $170,000, 5.6 percent; Glidden, $149,000, 5 percent; Breda, $53,000, 1.8 percent; Templeton, $39,000, 1.3 percent; Arcadia, $53,000, 1.8 percent; Halbur, $26,000, 1 percent; Dedham, $32,000, 1 percent; Lidderdale, $22,000, 1 percent; Lanesboro, $17,000, .6 percent; and Ralston, $12,000, .4 percent.

The unincorporated area receive $972,000, or 32 percent of the total sales tax disbursements in Carroll County. The Board of Supervisors determines how that money is spent.

“With all the communities in Carroll County having the local-option sales tax and Carroll’s significant contribution, it is truly important to our county and communities that the citizens of Carroll vote ‘yes’ on Aug. 7,” the mayors say in the letter.

The following mayors signed the letter: Harvey Dales, Manning; Jeff Anthofer, Coon Rapids; Jim Ulveling, Breda; Ken Behrens, Manning; Russell Axman, Dedham; Shirley Thompson, Lanesboro; Julie Gleason, Arcadia; Dennis Williams, Halbur; Randy Huegerich, Willey; Randy Ayers, Lidderdale; and Roger Hartwigsen, Glidden.

Ralston Mayor Chad Stevens declined to sign the letter, Schweers said.

Stevens could not be reached for comment this morning.