Mark L. Johnson
Marana Sales Tax Increase Considerations
Marana has two remaining Sales Tax Increase Public Meetings on Thursday, 9/9/21 at 6:00 PM at the Dove Mountain Stem School and on Thursday, 9/30 at 3:00 PM at the Sunflower Community Center.
In addition, Marana has scheduled a Sales Tax Increase Public Hearing on Tuesday, 10/19/21 at 6:00 PM at the Town Council Chambers.
Marana is proposing a ½% (half cent) tax rate increase to certain transaction privilege tax classifications for the purpose of funding certain infrastructure and municipal building projects, such as the Multi-generational Community Center and Aquatic Center.
Please go to the Marana Community Center & Aquatic Center Website Page for more information.
Sale Tax Increase Considerations
Marana recently provided the community a Sales Tax Increase Public Hearing Notice related to the proposed half cent sales tax increase to fund the Community Center and Aquatic Center. As cited above, the hearing will be held on Tuesday, October 19 at 6:00 PM at the Municipal Complex.
The Notice included three items of interest; (1) of the 20 different sales tax codes, Construction/contracting is specifically excluded, (2) the purpose states “funding certain infrastructure and municipal building projects, such as the Multi-Generational Community Center and Aquatic Center” and (3) there is no sunset for the sales tax increase.
Apply Half Cent Sales Tax Across The Board
The exclusion of Construction/contracting is suspect. Why not increase all the Construction/contracting tax codes by the half cent sales tax increase? Developers for sure need to pay their fair share of the tax increase as these proposed facilities will be a promotional opportunity.
Note: TA learned at one of the public meetings that 65% of the retail sales tax comes from outside Marana. So it appears this tax increase is not a huge impact to the residents of Marana in terms of retail purchases.
Spread The Tax Proceeds Across Marana
TA was led to believe that the sales tax increase was just for the Community Center and Aquatic Center but it now it appears it can be for any infrastructure and municipal building project. The Community Center and Aquatic Center will primarily benefit those that live closest to the facility (Northwest Region). The Park & Recreation Master Plan survey respondents outside the Northwest Region only gave this project an average 45% priority approval rating. Why not build just the Aquatic Center and use the other sales tax increase collections on proposed park and preserve projects in the South and Northeast areas of Marana, e.g. Continental Reserve Parks, Saguaro Bloom Community Park, Twin Peaks Corridor Park (proposed), Tortolita Preserve, El Rio Preserve, etc.? This spreads the tax proceeds around the community so all residents will benefit.
Sales Tax Increase Sunset
There should be a sunset for this sales tax increase. It is designed for a specific purpose and should end when the funds are obtained and allocated.