“While I strongly support investing in Salt Lake City’s street and transit needs, I do not believe it is the right time for Salt Lake City to support the quarter-cent sales tax increase currently being considered by the Salt Lake County Council and city councils across the region.
The Salt Lake City Council recently passed—with strong support from myself, the public, and after a robust engagement period—a half-cent increase in the local sales tax to be used for roads, public safety, housing, and transit. The City also has a unique opportunity to ask voters to support an $87 million general obligation bond to reconstruct Salt Lake City’s worst roads—a bond which also has considerable support and is desperately needed.
I strongly believe the support the City has received for these funding options exists because of the comprehensive plans we have developed and the robust public engagement we underwent. It is also important to recognize, the difference between ‘no’ and ‘not right now.’ While the legislature left it to the counties to activate this sales tax increase, they also provide a path for cities to take action, a path which puts more control of the funding into the hands of local communities.
To fully implement our transit and transportation needs, Salt Lake City will need to think regionally and act locally. Let’s take the time necessary to launch our local plans, and coordinate with our regional partners to fund our future needs in a transparent and strategic manner.”