Mayor Rick Schultz
Good day fellow residents.
Since the creation of the local-option sales tax, the six area cities have used the money throughout their communities to add numerous amenities faster and at less cost. Money can only be used on roads, parks and trails and community buildings. St. Joseph started participating in 2006.
It’s set to expire in 2018. In November residents will be asked to extend the sales tax again for another 20 years, which is estimated to bring in $291 million in regional funding.
When major regional project(s) are funded, the rest of the sales-tax money is divided up among the participating cities, according to a formula partly based on population. The revenue comes from the extra half-cent added to a sale every time someone buys something taxable in any of those six cities.
St. Joseph used sales-tax revenue for a master park plan ($52,000), trail extensions ($700,000), for two sidewalk-construction projects ($750,000 and $200,000), for Centennial Park playground equipment ($33,200), for a park-and-trails development plan ($43,000) and for installing a heating system in the Lake Wobegon Trail building ($15,000).
This month, at 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 16 and 5:30 p.m. Monday, July 21, there will be brainstorming open house(s) at the St Joseph City Hall. Residents’ input on how to use the rest of the revenue (which will be distributed to St. Joseph) is important because voters once again must approve it. Area cities can use the money for their own projects.
It is extremely important to hear from our community, to learn and understand the needs and future demand with which these funds may be used. If you didn’t make it to the July 16 session, please plan to attend the July 21 session.
As always, the public is welcome to email, text, call or write a letter as we are very open to suggestions and feedback.
Here is the link to the city’s website where comments may be added also: http://www.cityofstjoseph.com/RequestTracker.aspx
Here are my email(s) and phone number: Rschultz25@msn.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, 320-260-0393 and 218-839-9378.