How often does a community have a chance to vote for a tax increase which will actually see taxes reduced — and yet still provide for infrastructure repair?
That’s the opportunity Pittsburg will have next week.
After the sunset of a half-cent sales tax voters approved to fund the roughly $18 million cost of the law enforcement center and Fire Station No. 1 — projects which were paid off early, be it noted — the City of Pittsburg is asking voters to approve a quarter-cent tax to assist with city street maintenance and sidewalk repair.
While no one is a fan of increased taxes, we believe this proposal should pass.
First because the sales tax rate would still drop from 9.25 percent to 9 percent — any reduction is good for taxpayers.
But in the main because the city has in the past leveraged roughly $1 million in KDOT funding to maintain city streets. However, in the current legislative environment, KDOT funds — wrongly in our opinion — are seen as a slush fund to raid to repair gaping holes in the state budget.
This tax would raise about $1 million a year and roughly double the city’s street budget.
There are many exciting things going on in Pittsburg — from Block 22 to the Mid-City Renaissance project — but streets are something anyone notices when they come to town, and the city’s streets don’t always reflect the growth the city is currently experiencing.
We have been impressed with the stewardship of the current city administration and feel confident they will use these additional funds wisely.
We enthusiastically urge Pittsburg voters to go to the polls either for early voting this weekend, or on Tuesday and vote “yes” on this project.
Pittsburg has exciting times ahead of it, and this tax will allow city streets to reflect the bright future ahead of this town.