Endorsement: Yes for sales tax increase for Geneva capital improvements
Geneva is getting more tax revenue in the coming months, and voters will decide March 20 how much. The city is asking residents to approve a sales tax increase one one-half of 1 percent. It would go into effect in July. If it is not approved, Geneva will institute a 2 percent tax on restaurant meals starting in May.
City officials say more money is needed for capital items, capital projects and infrastructure. Geneva has a non-home rule sales tax rate of 0.5 percent and would like to double it. While that might sound daunting, it really isn't. If the tax increase passes and you spend $50 in Geneva, you'll be paying an extra 25 cents in tax. That would bring the tax rate to 8 percent, the same as in Batavia and St. Charles.
If the tax increase fails, that same $50 spent in a restaurant will cost an extra $1. When we last wrote about tax increases in Geneva, we commended the city council for rescinding its approval of the 2 percent places for eating tax, preferring voters make the call on any new tax.
The Chamber of Commerce is also behind the sales tax increase as are some restaurant owners.
"We understand new income is necessary to maintain the services we expect, and it seems this increase is the most fair way to raise the money," chamber President Jean Gaines said.
Agreed. We recommend a yes vote.