Measure W: City Service Transaction Use Tax
About the Measure
"To enhance the health, safety and welfare of Greenfield, and provide greater general City services, such as strengthened public safety; increased youth recreation programs; re-establishment of code enforcement services; and other essential services, shall the City of Greenfield enact a voter approved 0.75 cent transaction and use tax, subject to annual audits and public review?"
Measure W is based on the following Findings and Declaration:
- The City has maintained a full-service Police Department and successfully recruited and employed a professional Police Chief, with the ability to prevent and investigate property, domestic violence, and other types of crime.
- In order to enhance public safety, the City will need to recruit and retain additional police officers, which will necessitate that the City attains parity with the local labor market.
- Additional City services, such as recreational programs and code enforcement will require additional revenues.
- The City has used its available General Fund balance to bridge the structural budget deficit, meaning it has used all available financial resources and will have none available to enhance services.
- Due to changes in State law, particularly the approval of Propositions 62 and 218, the City has very few means available for increasing General Fund revenue.
- Absent an enhancement of City revenues, the City Council would be unable to authorize providing enhanced general City services.
Arguments in Favor
Written arguments in favor of the "2015 City Services Transactions and Use Tax" Measure, to be considered by the voters on November 3, 2015 include:
- As the economy has begun to show signs of improvements, the residents of Greenfield have reasonable expectations for increased City services. We agree that the City should provide more for its residents, including public safety, recreation, and increased code enforcement. It is our priority to do whatever is necessary to make this possible.
- However, new or increased services cannot be provided without increased revenues. With the proposed new revenue, the City will be able to increase law enforcement services. Currently, the City provides approximately 1.1 officers per 1,000 residents; however, the national standard for West Coast cities the size of Greenfield is 1.5 officers per 1,000 residents. To begin to reach this national standard, an additional four officers will be hired, at a cost of $340,000 per year for pay and benefits. The City will also approve a new pay plan to ensure our officers stay in Greenfield protecting and serving our residents.
- Public safety goes hand-in-hand with recreational opportunities and code enforcement. Enhancing recreation programs can provide our community with wholesome activities such as free concerts in the park, Cinco de Mayo, and 4th of July celebrations. Code enforcement will do much to strengthen residents' pride in our beautiful community. Passage of this additional three-quarter cent sales tax would generate approximately $900,000 per year. This new revenue would ensure enhanced public safety for all of Greenfield's residents, re-establish code enforcement, and increase recreational opportunities for our community.
- Revenues from this tax will stay in Greenfield and will be subject to the review of a resident Oversight Committee.