Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot

Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot title=
Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot
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Source: City of Goleta

Voters in the City of Goleta will have a number of local decisions to make on the upcoming November 8, 2022, Ballot. Last night, June 21, 2022, the Goleta City Council approved putting before voters the election of two City Council seats, a flavored tobacco ban ordinance and a 1% Sales and Transaction Use tax measure. 

The upcoming election is a historic one for the City as it is the first by-district election in the City’s 20-year history. The City is divided into four districts and on November 8, 2022, voters in Districts 1 and 2 will elect a Council representative. The Councilmembers will serve four-year terms expiring November 2026. The candidate filing period for the two City Council seats will be July 18, 2022, to August 12, 2022. 

Voters will also consider an ordinance banning the sales of flavored tobacco. While the City Council adopted an ordinance banning the sales of flavored tobacco in October 2021, a referendum petition against the ordinance was later submitted to the City Clerk’s Office. As a result, the issue will now go to the voters for consideration.

Also on the ballot, voters will consider an 1% (or 1¢ per dollar) Sales and Transaction Use Tax measure. After significant research, resident polling, and community engagement, the City Council voted in favor of letting voters decide on whether to increase Goleta’s Transaction and Use Tax by 1% to provide approximately $10.6 million annually in additional revenues to complete important unfunded projects, make repairs to aging streets and infrastructure, and fund the community’s priority programs. The increase would go into effect in January 2024. 

For more information, please reference the staff report at https://tinyurl.com/rr28zsk7 or watch a recording of the meeting here: https://tinyurl.com/2y28bvsz.

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benround Jun 23, 2022 11:31 AM
Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot

Goleta residents are being asked to approve just a 1% sales tax increase when in reality it is a 12.9% increase in the tax that we will pay. Math still is a constant - increasing a 7.75% tax to 8.75% is a 12.9% increase in that tax and the revenue it generates. If you buy a $100 taxable item today it is taxed at $7.75, under this proposal it will cost you $8.75 in tax. If you are good with that - go for it!

Pete Stronzo Jun 24, 2022 01:23 AM
Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot

The adjusted operating budget for Goleta for FY 22/23 is projected to be $34.3 million. The staff report states that the increase in spending compared to the FY 21/22 budget is largely driven by personnel related costs and increasing staff levels to address ongoing workload capacity to help meet service levels and address critical needs. Salaries & Benefits: $12,257,900 (22/23 originally proposed), $14,745,200 (now adopted), this is a $2,487,300 increase in total salaries and benefits. This is an increase of 20.3%, which results in a total increase of 14.75 FTE in FY 22/23 that were not included in the original budget, for a total of 114.775 FTE. (Note that there were 46 FTE in 2009. There were 88 FTE in 2019).

With inflation at the highest level in 40 years and fuel prices at an all-time high, it seems an inopportune time to further increase the cost of living in Goleta with a sales tax increase, which is considered the most regressive form of taxation for lower income Goleta residents, especially when much of the increase is expected to fund 15 additional City of Goleta employees.

Perhaps this can be discussed/debated at the upcoming candidate forums for Districts 1 and 2...

infomaniac Jun 24, 2022 05:59 PM
Local Decisions for Goleta on the November 2022 Ballot

Let's be clear that paying an extra cent on the dollar is what we are talking about. So if you have lunch with a friend and the bill is $50, the extra amount you will pay with a 1% increase is 50 cents. But if you then go buy gasoline, prescription drugs, or groceries, they are not subject to the sales tax so there will be NO increase. Meanwhile, almost 50% of the revenue Goleta will get from this tax will come from non-Goleta residents shopping here at Target, Costco, etc. This is only fair since they use Goleta Roads and are protected by our public safety personnel, so paying an extra cent on the dollar is a way for them to help pay their way. There's no free ride. If we want to fix our community center, our roads, fund fire prevention, etc. we should vote for this tax.

Yes the tax is regressive. But government actions to protect our safety, provide good roads and sidewalks, have a Community Center that is safe and serves everyone, that's PROGRESSIVE.

Plus if passed this increase will be effective Jan. 2024, by which time inflation should be reduced and any recession weakening or over.

Please keep an open mind about this action.

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