Voters set to decide on park sales tax renewal

1 year 2 months 2 weeks ago October 30, 2015 Oct 30, 2015 Friday, October 30 2015 Friday, October 30, 2015 4:42:00 PM CDT in News
By: Tyler Murry, KOMU 8 Reporter
Embed Code Copied

COLUMBIA - Columbians will decide on whether or not to renew an eighth-cent sales tax to fund parks and trails on the Nov. 3 ballot.

If approved, the tax would raise about $18.4 million to maintain existing parks and trails, fund trail extensions, acquire new greenspace and build a new sports field house, city officials said.

The city has a permanent eighth-cent sales tax in place, but the other eighth of a cent is up for renewal, bringing the total to a .25 cent sales tax towards parks.

Parks and Recreation Director Mike Griggs said having good parks is a big advantage for Columbia.

"If a park system is well-maintained, then property values can actually go up about five to 22 percent," Griggs said.

The largest portion of the money, $8.28 million, would go to maintenance of existing parks and trails. In addition, $2.63 million would go to land acquisition for potential future development. New development of facilities would cost an estimated $3.22 million.

One Columbia mother said she loves being able to use the variety of nearby parks with her children.

"I just think having a place where they can run and play and be free outside is awesome," Amanda Dablemont said.

However, some disapprove of the proposed tax renewal.

Boone County for Liberty Treasurer Sean Rebbery said, "It's a good thing to increase home values and increase the value of the city, but the very people who are burdened the most by a sales tax can't even afford homes in the first place."

Boone County for Liberty is a political organization made up of citizens in Columbia that said it finds parks to be a luxury and would rather see city officials focus on other issues.

"Streets are something that everybody uses, everyone benefits from, I would argue, to a greater degree than parks," Rebbery said. "Both the fire and police pensions are underfunded. The fire department is still asking for more."

However, Third Ward council member Karl Skala said the city is working to improve all aspects including parks, streets and other projects.

"In terms of economic development, it certainly is an attractive proposition." Skala said. "Part of the retention piece that is very critical is this business about having satisfied employees in terms of where they live, work, raise their children and go to school. Parks are a critical to that."

Fifth Ward council member Laura Nauser said she agrees parks are a big piece of making Columbia an attractive place to live. However, she said she understands concerns about wanting to make sure the city doesn't focus too much attention on just parks and trails.

"As we continue to grow, is the park sales tax going to be sufficient funding? Because we are already adding to the parks system, but we also subsidize it through general revenue." Nauser said. " As that system continue to grow, we have to ask ourselves, how much are we going to subsidize?"

Nauser, Skala and Griggs said maintaining the current system is the most important aspect of this proposal, which is why maintenance would receive the largest portion of funds.

 

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — New Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens will outline his policies on jobs, ethics, public safety and education... More >>
10 minutes ago January 17, 2017 Jan 17, 2017 Tuesday, January 17 2017 Tuesday, January 17, 2017 11:14:00 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis' fortunes may be looking up, thanks to a surprising surge in business startups. ... More >>
21 minutes ago January 17, 2017 Jan 17, 2017 Tuesday, January 17 2017 Tuesday, January 17, 2017 11:03:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Prosecutors have filed charges against one of two men arrested following an assault at the Red Roof Inn... More >>
59 minutes ago January 17, 2017 Jan 17, 2017 Tuesday, January 17 2017 Tuesday, January 17, 2017 10:25:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - An MU associate teaching professor is presenting a petition to the Columbia City Council Tuesday evening on behalf... More >>
9 hours ago January 17, 2017 Jan 17, 2017 Tuesday, January 17 2017 Tuesday, January 17, 2017 1:34:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Almost 50 years after the death of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Columbia groups still... More >>
13 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 10:08:00 PM CST in News
SUNRISE BEACH – Buying and selling personal property privately, such as furniture, clothes and cars, is commonplace in today’s world... More >>
14 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 9:18:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is cutting $146 million of spending from the budget, including tens of... More >>
19 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 4:13:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - After a budget resolution aimed at repealing Obamacare was reached Jan. 12, groups in Missouri plan to protest... More >>
20 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 2:50:00 PM CST in News
CALIFORNIA (AP) - Central Missouri Democrats nominated an attorney who formerly worked for the Missouri Senate to run in a... More >>
20 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 2:36:00 PM CST in News
HILLSBORO (AP) - The Missouri State Highway Patrol says a 28-year-old man died after a four-wheeler he was riding on... More >>
21 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 2:09:00 PM CST in News
NICKELVILLE (AP) - A southwest Missouri county highway is expected to be closed until Thursday as crews clean up an... More >>
21 hours ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 2:02:00 PM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Police are investigating after a 34- year-old man was found dead outside a hospital in north... More >>
1 day ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 10:51:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Cafe Berlin reopened Monday for brunch, after being closed following a destructive break-in. The break-in on Saturday night... More >>
1 day ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 10:05:00 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - St. Louis' fortunes may be looking up, thanks to a surprising surge in business startups. ... More >>
1 day ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 9:41:00 AM CST in News
COOPER COUNTY - Just before 5 a.m. Monday morning, the Cooper County Fire Protection District responded to a structure fire... More >>
1 day ago January 16, 2017 Jan 16, 2017 Monday, January 16 2017 Monday, January 16, 2017 8:29:00 AM CST in Top Stories
CAMDEN COUNTY - Deputies took a suspect who stabbed three people Sunday into custody without incident. The suspect is awaiting... More >>
1 day ago January 15, 2017 Jan 15, 2017 Sunday, January 15 2017 Sunday, January 15, 2017 10:20:00 PM CST in Top Stories
BOONE COUNTY - The northbound lanes of Highway 63 near Hinton Road were closed after the engine compartment of a... More >>
1 day ago January 15, 2017 Jan 15, 2017 Sunday, January 15 2017 Sunday, January 15, 2017 9:49:07 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are hoping to expan d services to Missouri customers... More >>
1 day ago January 15, 2017 Jan 15, 2017 Sunday, January 15 2017 Sunday, January 15, 2017 7:50:00 PM CST in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 38°
12pm 39°
1pm 40°
2pm 41°
3pm 41°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
12:30p
Inside Edition
11:00a
Jerry Springer
12:00p
Jerry Springer
1:00p
Maury

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Wall
8:00p
This Is Us
9:00p
Chicago Fire
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
No Tomorrow
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld