Bradburn Brief August 2019
Truth in Taxation
Dear Sandy Resident,
Summers are always extremely busy for the city but this summer has been exceptionally hectic. From unveiling 45 electric vehicle charging stations citywide to a 4th of July event (which went off without a hitch despite the weather) and bringing electric scooters to The Cairns District, there has been no shortage of excitement around City Hall!
In June, the city council proposed a tax increase, which will impact residents by $3.67 per month on an average home value of $403,000. Last year, my administration went through the budget line-by-line and cut $1.3 million from the budget, everything down to the amount of lights we put up for Christmas. I can honestly say the budget is now as lean as it can possibly get. We also eliminated the water fund transfer into the general fund. In the past, water fees have been increased and the excess has been put in the general fund to cover operational costs. I don’t believe that using fee increases to bolster city budgets is transparent. Proposed property tax increases provide residents with the opportunity to be heard at multiple public hearings including the Truth in Taxation hearing which will be held on Aug. 13 at 6 p.m. in the City Council Chamber. Additionally, the truth in taxation process makes us as elected officials more accountable to residents about why an increase is absolutely needed.
Sandy has the lowest property taxes in the valley and has raised taxes only 4% over the last 20 years. This has not allowed us to keep up with inflation. The city has relied heavily on sales tax growth over the years to compensate for very low property taxes. Currently, we receive about two-thirds of all tax dollars from sales tax. When a recession hits, sales tax revenue suffers and our ability to maintain service levels is jeopardized. The proposed increase would make Sandy the second lowest for property taxes in the valley.
Tax increases are never desirable but maintaining high levels of public safety is extremely important for the city. With the increase, we will be able improve public safety by hiring seven firefighters and five police officers. We will also be able to hire one new snowplow driver and purchase an additional snowplow. These are core government functions and assist the city in continuing the high level of service you expect from us. You can read more about the proposed property tax increase at bit.ly/SandyTruthinTaxation.
Lastly, please remember that you can always connect with us to get more information by going to our City websites sandy.utah.gov and SandyNow.com and by accessing our social media channels Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube for daily updated information. Please feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org as well.
Thank you for allowing me to serve you!
Mayor Kurt Bradburn