GREENBRIER — City officials unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday night opposing a county sales tax reallocation proposal that would redistribute a tax currently split 50/50 between the sheriff’s office and the county road fund if approved by Faulkner County voters in November.
Mayor Sammy Joe Hartwick said that he and “every mayor in the county” opposes the tax reallocation proposal.
The Greenbrier mayor said he was not opposed to the sheriff’s office receiving more money but that he was against the current proposal of reallocating county sales tax funding.
Currently, the county has a one-half percent sales and use tax that is split 50/50 among the Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office and the county roads fund. The Faulkner County Quorum Court on Aug. 18 passed a resolution and an ordinance to have residents determine the fate of the tax during the 2020 election.
Should Faulkner County residents approve the tax reallocation proposal, the tax would instead be split among the sheriff’s office, county roads fund, for 911 services and toward animal control/shelter. The proposal would reallocate 60 percent of the tax collections for the sheriff’s while the county road fund would see 35 percent of the money. The animal control/shelter and 911 would each get 2.5 percent of the funding.
According to the resolution that was unanimously supported by the Greenbrier City Council, the tax reallocation would affect economic vitality as well as residents’ safety and quality of life.
“[The] City of Greenbrier and Faulkner County have enjoyed a productive working relationship and have partnered to complete important projects such as the Tyler Street Extension, Ivy Street, Poppy Street and Mary Rose drive overlay projects and … every mayor in Faulkner County has agreed and has signed a letter stating their strong opposition to any proposal that would be advanced by the Faulkner County Quorum Court that would divert voter-approved sales tax dollars dedicated for roads,” the resolution opposing the tax proposal reads in part. “[The] reallocation of funds could dramatically impact Greenbrier and Faulkner County’s ability to attract matching funds from state and federal sources and could limit future economic development activity.”
In other business, the Greenbrier City Council also approved allowing they city to move forward with a $100,000 purchase. The building would be purchased over four years in $25,000 payments and is located on city property in the industrial park. Mayor Hartwick said that while the building “needs some work,” he plans to relocate the parks and recreation department into the building once renovations are complete.