Montebello Voters Reject Sales Tax Hike

By EGP Staff Report

The unofficial results from Tuesday’s election solidified Montebello voters’ overwhelming opposition to Measure S, which proposed a 0.75 percent hike in the city’s sales tax to bring new revenue to the city.

Despite Montebello officials repeatedly declaring the sales tax increase was necessary, Measure S was soundly defeated with a large difference of 2,213 (62.13 percent) to 1,349 (37.87 percent) votes.

After declaring a financial emergency, the Montebello City Council in May voted to hold a special election on Nov. 7 to ask voters to raise the sales tax.

City officials originally wanted to hike the sales tax by 1-cent and projected a $9 million jump in revenue if the measure were to pass, but were later forced to lower the projection to $6.75 million to comply with a state law regulating the amount local municipalities can charge in sales tax.

Because Los Angeles County voters had approved a quarter-cent sales tax hike in March to pay for services for the homeless, which went into on Oct. 1, Montebello officials were forced to lower their ask to .75-cents to avoid violating the cap, causing the drop in projected revenue.

The city said the added revenue would help pay for things like street repairs and filling pot holes, park programs and maintenance, senior services and public safety programs, and to hire additional police and fire personnel.

Montebello residents, including a local watchdog group, didn’t buy it and urged voters to against the hike, saying the city council could not be trusted to spend the money as intended.

 

 

 

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November 9, 2017  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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