Final hearing set for proposed 16.2% tax increase

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SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake County leaders will hold a public hearing Thursday night to discuss a property tax increase that could have a significant impact.

The proposed property tax increase for Salt Lake County's 2013 budget is 16.2 percent.

The county has proposed a tentative budget of $785 million for next year. The 16.2 percent property tax increase would go toward countywide services like law enforcement. Another proposal on the table calls for a slightly larger tax increase. It would also dedicate funds to the county library system.

For the owner of a home valued at $238,000, the two tax increases together would amount to about $77 more in property tax per year. For a business property with the same value, the tax is an extra $141 per year.

In a recent interview with KSL, Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon said he knows a tax increase isn't popular, especially coming at the end of his time in office. But he says it's either an increase or cutting of programs and jobs.

"(It) doesn't make me look good to ask for a tax increase at the end of my administration. But it was the right thing to do. And at the end of the day, I ask myself what's the right thing to do? I try to do that," he said.

Public Hearing
  • Thursday, Dec. 13
  • 6 p.m.
  • Salt Lake County Government Center
    Council Chambers
    2001 S. State Street

The mayor and council members point out the county hasn't had a major tax increase like this in over a decade.

At a public hearing on Tuesday, county residents were not happy about such a large tax increase, especially after they just voted for a $47 million bond to expand the park system. Many residents expressed feelings that the budget should have been released before the election.

The council could still trim the tax increase, or cut funding out of various county services. Since the budget was first revealed council members have reduced it by $2.5 million. Much of that reduction came at the expense of county employees and their benefits.

More residents are expected to express their dislike of the budget at Thursday's final public hearing.

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