Today we ask Saline City Council candidates about city services and taxes that fund them,
There are three open seats on Saline City Council in the November election. Incumbents David Rhoads and Dean Girbach are seeking re-election. Lee Bourgoin, the city’s former finance director, is also on the ballot.
The Saline Post sent questions to all three candidates. Rhoads and Girbach supplied answers while Bourgoin did not.
Here is today's question.
In recent years, the city has balanced budget through worker concessions, attrition, borrowing, putting off purchases and dipping into the fund balance, electing not to pursue available tax increases. City services have been described as down to the bone. Is a tax increase something you will consider? Why or why not? What are the factors you will keep in mind when considering a tax increase?
I would consider asking the voters if they would approve increasing the millage rate but only after I am sure that all other options have been considered and that tax payers are receiving good value for their taxes.
If the city experiences a severe reduction in personal property taxes due to actions by the state legislature and sufficient revenue is not provided to replace the lost revenue, then in all likelihood, yes. I cannot and will not jeopardize basic services needed to prevent potential harm to our residents. Whether it be loss in property, loss in home value or loss in sense of security, the resulting impact alone will create repercussions taking years from which the city may never fully recover.
I do however believe a vote by the taxpayers is the first course of action if council considers any additional millage for recreational needs, city streets or additional public safety funding above and beyond an amount previously authorized for fire.
Did not respond.
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