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Get the One Cent Tax Facts

Get the One Cent Tax Facts

Get the One Cent Tax Facts

On Tuesday, November 8, 2016 voters in Teton County will decide if they are for or against a 1% General Revenue Sales Tax, otherwise known as a 1 cent Local Option Tax.

GET THE FACTS.   GET INFORMED.   GO VOTE.    WWW.TownOfJackson.com

In September of 2015, the Teton County Commissioners and the Jackson Town Council unanimously adopted the Jackson/Teton County Integrated Transportation Plan, or ITP. Click here to view the Integrated Transportation Plan (ITP).

In November of 2015, the Teton County Commissioners and the Jackson Town Council unanimously adopted the Jackson/Teton County Workforce Housing Action Plan, or HAP. Click here to view the Workforce Housing Action Plan (HAP).

Both plans call for efforts and initiatives beyond what current funding sources in either the Town or the County can support. As such, both the ITP and the HAP also call for a dedicated funding source to support and advance the initiatives contained within them.

The two most viable dedicated funding sources are likely the General Purpose Excise Tax and the Specific Purpose Excise Tax (or SPET). Statutorily, the SPET revenue may be used to fund “specific purposes authorized by the qualified electors” but may not be used to fund “ordinary operations of local government except those operations related to a specific project.”

In terms of a practical application, this means that if residents of Teton County are hoping to advance the ITP initiative of doubling START ridership by 2024 and again by 2035, SPET monies can be used to purchase the buses that will carry those additional riders, but cannot be used to pay related costs such as fuel, insurance, and the salaries of drivers or mechanics.

In contrast, the General Purpose Excise Tax allows for these operational expenditures. Largely for this reason, in April of 2016, the Teton County Commissioners and the Jackson Town Council approved a resolution to place a 1% general revenue sales tax on the ballot for consideration by the voters, and in June of 2016, the Commissioners and Council adopted the Community Priorities Fund Policy Resolution, committing the revenues from this general purpose tax to the community priorities of housing and transportation.

On September 20th, the Town Council approved a subsequent resolution creating a special revenue fund for community priorities, which establishes a specific budget structure that will allow transparency in tracking the receipt and expenditure of any funds collected as a result of this ballot initiative.

On October 18th, the Teton County Commissioners will consider a similar resolution. For Teton County, the Community Priorities Fund will be managed as the County has historically managed similar funds, such as the Fire/EMS, Parks and Recreation, and Pathways special revenue funds.

Whereas a SPET tax terminates once the amount approved by the electors is collected, the general revenue tax would continue for four years. Over that time, collections are estimated to reach $40-48 million dollars.

If passed, there are two ways the tax may be continued beyond the initial four year time period - if supported by a subsequent vote of the electors or if supported by the adoption of both a resolution approved by the County Commissioners and an ordinance adopted by the Town Council.

If the tax is so continued, there are several ways it can then be terminated - either via the passing of subsequent ordinances and resolutions rescinding the tax – or via an election to reconsider the tax, which can be called for by the Commissioners and Council, or by a petition of at least 5% of the electors of the county.

The general revenue initiative is on the ballot for public consideration four weeks from today. Please take the time to seek any additional information you might need to make an informed decision, and go and make your voice heard at the polls. 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Will my tax rate increase?

No. The sale tax rate has been 6% since 1985 when the first Cap Tax (now SPET) was implemented. Currently there is a 1% Special Purpose Excise Tax (SPET) in place funding the remediation of the West Broadway Landslide. Funds for this project will be collected by April of 2017. Once the funds have been collected this 1% tax will cease, dropping the tax rate to 5%. If the General Revenue Tax is approved, then the collections will begin in April, 2017 (once the SPET tax ceases) effectively keeping the sales tax rate at 6%.  


What has the been done to insure that funds from this tax will be allocated towards housing and transportation?

In June of 2016, the Commissioners and Council adopted the Community Priorities Fund Policy Resolution, committing the revenues from this general purpose tax to the community priorities of housing and transportation.

On September 20th, the Town Council approved a subsequent resolution creating a special revenue fund for community priorities, which establishes a specific budget structure that will allow transparency in tracking the receipt and expenditure of any funds collected as a result of this ballot initiative.

On October 18th, the Teton County Commissioners will consider a similar resolution. For Teton County, the Community Priorities Fund will be managed as the County has historically managed similar funds, such as the Fire/EMS, Parks and Recreation, and Pathways special revenue funds.


What is the official ballot language?

Shall Teton County, Wyoming be authorized to impose an additional 1% of General Revenue Sales and use Tax to be used for general revenue purposes?

___ For the county sales and use tax

___ Against the county sales and use tax