Ducktown eyes sales tax increase
If the City Council decides to go forward with a sales tax increase, it will have to be approved by the state and then voted on by citizens in November’s elections.
by Emily Dilbeck
Mayor Talley suggested a sales tax raise from 2.25% to 2.75%, in order to cover rising costs of living. This would equal out to about a nickel tax for every $10. Talley said he doesn’t want to tax businesses or property owners, and said a sales tax increase would include visitors to Ducktown, and not just locals. Commissioner Brad Miller said he understood the point of the tax, but that as a small business owner he was worried about how this would affect businesses. If the City Council decides to go forward with a sales tax increase, it will have to be approved by the state and then voted on by citizens in November’s elections.
Talley also suggested switching over the City’s three vehicles to propane. He said he calculated that the City could save $426 a month if the vehicles were to run on propane instead of gas. He has already been in contact with American Alternative Fuels, one of the nation’s leading propane conversion companies, who estimate the total cost for 3 vehicles to be $18,690. Talley explained that he had also spoken to the U.S. Department of Rural Development, who said they could offer a $15,000 grant and then cover the rest of the money through a loan with 3.3% interest. Commissioner Collins said he didn’t think the older vehicle needed to be converted, but rather replaced with a more efficient one. Both Miller and Collins said they were receptive to the idea, but wanted to look further into the details.
The Council also discussed payment for City worker Jeremy Tipton’s medical bills. Tipton, who suffered an anaphylactic reaction when stung by a bee, was rushed to the hospital by two co-workers, whose quick thinking saved his life. Medical bills for the emergency trip visit totaled $3,549, but Copper Basin Medical Center agreed to give a 20% discount if the bill was paid in full within the next 30 days. Both Commissioners and Mayor Talley voted to go ahead and pay the bill.
The Commission will next meet on Wednesday, August 1st at 7 pm. The date change is due to the August 2nd elections, which will be held in City Hall on Thursday. There will be a called meeting July 17th at 6 pm at City Hall.
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