City Sales Tax Pursued

After much frustration and speechifying about what kind of sales-tax-increase ballot measure they could and could not support, members of the Santa Barbara City Council voted 5-2 last week to discuss specific proposals at a later date, though it remains highly uncertain anything yet envisioned could garner the supermajority required to put such a matter to voters this November. The councilmembers all agree there are about $450 million worth of unfunded infrastructure needs. On the table is a plan to raise about half that over 20 years via a half-cent sales-tax increase that would generate about $11 million a year. A pollster hired by City Hall indicated 64 percent of likely voters would support such a matter.

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