The City can pretend this isn’t a new property tax, but a friggin 0% to 26% increase for residential and a 56% increase for commercial properties is NEW. Your pie chart shows it all – with the new City piece of the pie siphoning nearly a third of all property tax revenue. How is it that Grand County (getting 14% of all revenue) can have a balanced budget, afford the sheriff’s office, maintain roads and pay competitive wages, yet the City that gets the predominance of sales tax revenue can’t manage? Maybe management, or lack of, is the keyword here. The excuse “every other city has one” is irrelevant because most Utah cities don’t have the huge influx of tourist-generated revenue that Moab does. In April, the Utah State Tax Commission reported that collections for the first nine months of the fiscal year were $1.52 billion more than last year, which is a 19.3% increase. Sadly, with the selling out of our town, we see no end in sight of tourist dollars pouring in.

For infrastructure, tap into the American Rescue Plan money and solicit the State of Utah (which has a 1.5 billion dollar budget surplus). What are these dire needs anyway? In March this year, while full pandemic restrictions were still in place, I met one of the councilmen outside measuring my obscure side street for “bike paths and sidewalks.” This makes me very curious about exactly what kinds of projects this property tax money will be used for. It also shows a complete lack of respect for residents; do you have any idea of the hardship and expense the elderly, low income, and disabled people would incur when you rip out our fences, landscapes and driveways on streets where no kids live and no major traffic occurs? We are already getting an increase from the County and everything is ridiculously expensive now. You pretend to tout “affordable housing” but did you even consider how much higher rents will be if this tax is approved?

No City Property Tax. You don’t need it, your justifications are vague (other than police funding: we understand that). Tighten up your budget and stop wasting money. Our residents and businesses can’t afford any more!!

Katherine McGill