Charlotte Income Tax Vote Coming Tuesday


Would you be willing to pay another one percent of your income for better roads?

Charlotte is hoping voters will vote 'yes' on that sentiment Tuesday.

The proposal would tax residents living in the city 1 percent while non-residents who worked in the city would be taxed at 0.5 percent.

But some individuals, both inside and outside Charlotte think it's too much.

Individuals like Neal Rohrs who doesn't live in the city but works there. He won't be able to vote for the proposal which he says is all the more reason to be against it.

"There's got to be a better way to get the streets fixed in this town," Rohrs said. "I don't know if it's better prioritizing or a better system but everybody in the building where my office is, none of us have the opportunity to vote in this."

Rohrs, president of the 'Stop Tax Increase In Charlotte' ballot committee, along with a couple dozen other individuals spent their Monday evening making calls to voters, trying to get their message out.

The phone bank was hosted by Americans For Prosperity-Michigan at Reidy's pizzeria in downtown Charlotte.

Field Coordinator Randy Wood said their message was clear.

"This is what we do, we fight tax increase," he said. "We've gotten a lot of positive feedback from taxpayers who are just fed up."

"Every time they go to the polls they're asked for more and more money out of their pocket to feed government and they're sick of it."

Meanwhile supporters of the income tax proposal point to the fact that 65 percent of Charlotte's roads are classified as being in 'poor condition,' according to a Department of Public Works Survey.

"There's a growing need for it," said Charlotte City Manager Gregg Guetschow.

"They get worse every year so we need money to do that and we have not been able to find adequate resources over the last several years to be able to fund streets."

Even so, Guetschow admitted he doesn't think the proposal will pass.

"We would be overly optimistic if we believed that the first time we put this before voters that they were going to pass it," he said.

Guetschow said if it gets defeated it'll more than likely be back on the ballot for the next election.

If passed though, the tax would bring in roughly $1.5 million in extra revenue, though city officials have said they'll only need about $500,000 for road repairs and maintenance.

When the proposal was presented to voters during a Charlotte City Council meeting in May before being placed on the ballot it was met with overwhelming opposition.


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