Posted 10 months ago
By John Axtell
The Chadron city council has set an April 30th election on 15-year half-cent LB-840 economic development sales tax and accompanying plan for using the revenue. The tax would begin October 1st, 2014…the day after the city’s existing LB-840 tax expires.
80% of the revenue would go toward city infrastructure projects, beginning with the planned $4-million dollar upgrade and expansion of the storm sewer system. 13% would go toward community development and 7% for community betterment projects.
The split is similar to the one for the current LB-840 tax, which earmarks 75% of the revenue to help pay for the new nearly 3-year old Chadron Community Hospital.
Dr John Gamby…the only member on the council when the original LB-840 tax was approved to help fund the new Chadron Community Hospital…cast the only vote against the new version.
Gamby called for a longer time after the end of the current tax before a new one began, especially with the city looking at a possible project to enclose the city swimming pool.
He also complained that past councils and administrations had failed to hold to the pledge of the city’s original 1-cent sales tax that the money would be evenly split between infrastructure and property tax relief.
City Manager Wayne Anderson told Gamby that he’d gone back and checked city records about the 1-cent sales tax and had discovered the actual split was 85-15 for property tax relief, the formula used in preparing the Chadron budget for at least the last decade.