Highland City taxes up 40 percent since 2007

Published: Friday, June 22 2012 3:03 p.m. MDT

Highland Tax Revenue for 2013

Highland Tax Revenue in 2006

HIGHLAND Highland City's tax revenues are set to rise 41 percent from 2007 after passing its $900,000 property tax increase on June 19.

The move shows the city is becoming more dependant on taxation for revenue rather than relying on areas like licensing and permits.

The proposed budget includes the property tax increase and an estimated $60,000 rise in sales tax revenue. The increases will raise the city's tax revenue by 24.2 percent to $5.24 million, compared to $4.22 million in fiscal year 2012.

The tax increase is intended to pay for road repairs and maintenance, according to the tax proposal.

M. Royce Van Tassell, vice president of the Utah Taxpayers Association, said his group is opposed to the tax increase.

"They are asking taxpayers to pay a permanent tax increase to take care of one-time expenses," Tassell said. "We're very disappointed that they have been so frivolous in building these lavish buildings and are now asking tax payers to bail them out of a difficult situation."

The city has $21.82 million in liabilities, according to Bloomberg.

Scott Smith, Mayor Pro Tem of Highland, said that the tax increase for road repair is necessary to avoid additional expenses in the future when the repairs could be worse.

"If you don't maintain [the roads] and spend some money upfront, we're going to fall off the cliff," Smith said before voting on the tax increase at the June 19 town hall meeting.

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