Ephrata to pursue sales tax rise for road maintenance

Print Article

EPHRATA — The Ephrata City Council has begun the process of creating a transportation benefit district (TBD) for the city after agreeing that a two-tenths percent citywide sales tax would be the best way to fund needed street maintenance.

At a regular meeting on Tuesday, council members were nearly unanimous in support of a dedicated raise in the city’s sales tax as opposed to a $20 car tab to fund road improvements, saying that a sales tax will also allow non-residents to contribute to street maintenance.

“With a sales tax, areas around the city will pay that are not covered by the car tax,” said council member William Coe.

However, council member Matt Moore wanted to make sure the council would support a measure that would pass with city voters.

“This is not something that will negatively affect business, but it falls more on the business community,” Moore said, adding that it was one more thing business owners would have take care of, along with the rising minimum wage and increased health insurance costs.

“Personally, I’m for car tabs,” Moore said.

Ephrata, like a number of cities in Grant and Adams counties, is looking to create a TBD to make up for the lack of a state support for city road maintenance. Last winter was especially hard, and Ephrata struggled to fill potholes and repair streets damaged by the long, cold winter.

According to City Administrator Wes Crago, Ephrata needs an estimated $200,000 each year simply to keep its roads repaired.

“A sales tax brings in more money and spreads out the burden,” Crago said. “But car tabs, cars cause road damage, so cars pay for road damage.”

Currently, Ephrata residents pay 8 percent sales tax, including a one-tenth of a percent tax dedicated to fund city police.

The council instructed Crago and his staff to draft a resolution creating a TBD and the dedicated sales tax, which will go before city voters for their approval at a special election on April 24, 2018.

Charles H. Featherstone can be reached via email at countygvt@columbiabasinherald.com.

Print Article

Read More Local News

No injuries in Ephrata drive-by, police investigating

January 21, 2019 at 2:40 pm | The Royal Register EPHRATA — Multiple shots were fired in Ephrata Sunday night during a drive-by near the 700 block of Second Avenue and F Street Southeast. No one was injured in the altercation and the Ephrata Police ...

Comments

Read More

Court upholds 28-year sentence for rapist

January 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | The Royal Register SPOKANE — A three-judge panel of Washington’s Division III Court of Appeals has upheld a 64-year-old Soap Lake man’s 28-year prison sentence for the 2014 rape of a 17-year-old boy. A contemporary st...

Comments

Read More

Othello man dies from injuries received in collision

January 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald OTHELLO — A man who was involved in a collision near Othello last week passed away from injuries he received in the collision. About 8:55 p.m. on Wednesday Dennis Moraney, 54, of Mattawa was in the ...

Comments

Read More

State appeals court rejects kidnapper’s claims of constitutional violation

January 21, 2019 at 5:00 am | The Royal Register SPOKANE — A state appeals court has denied the appeal of a Mattawa man, convicted in 2007 of kidnapping four members of the same family, that contended the state had illegitimately added several year...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(509) 765-4561
PO Box 910
Moses Lake, WA 98837

©2019 Columbia Basin Herald Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X