Bill Samuels and Spencer Pearson Chime In On The 911 Sales Tax Proposal

A couple of local politicos have entered the fray on the 911 tax.

Republican Committeeman Bill Samuels sent an email far and wide listing all of the reasons why one should vote “no” on the tax.

From Bills email…


1.We have all heard that we need another local tax increase of more than $8 million a year with no expiration date. The most common talking point for those who want a higher tax rate even on milk for the children, according to their own website, is better 911 service for both city and county. they say that for the entire county there is only one person on 911 answering duty at all times. Considering how many people the city and county employ all together, why not just just reassign few to answer the phone ?2. They claim that theY must have plenty of $ because they expect that new communications technology which may develop in the future will be more expensive. How do they know that ? The massive changes in communications which we’ve seen for decades have been making phone calls CHEAPER, not more costly.3. Every tax measure should have an expiration date so it will be subject to automatic voter review. We should always voter against any tax measure which has no sunset provision.

4. You can only raise any kind of tax so high before it reaches a point of diminishing returns. There is already at least anecdotal evidence of people shopping, especially for big ticket items, outside the city and county to save $ on sales taxes.

5.Like ANY general sales tax which applies even to groceries, it would fall hardest on the middle class and the working poor. Yes, richer people can eat more expensive foods more frequently, but this has obvious limits: nobody eats lobster three times everyday, or if anone ever did he probably developed a horrible food allergy.

6. They claims it’s only a small tax increase : less than 1 cent on the dollar. they always say this . they nickle and dime people to

7. When in doubt, a good citizen always votes “No”, especially when it will cost more than $8 million every year with no end in sight. If this really is needed we can vote on it again later, probably in a better form.


Spencer Pearson wrote the following on his liberty blog The Freedom Beat

First up, County Prop 1, the 911 sales tax. The issue here is simple: 911 services for Columbia-Boone County Joint Communications (C-BCJC) is painfully understaffed and their technology is out-of-date. The proposed bill would raise funds by adding a 0.375% sales tax on all goods sold in Boone Co. According to the ballot language, the tax aims “to fund 911 and emergency management services upgrades, including a new facility, new equipment and more emergency personnel.”

While everyone can agree that 911 services are a vital part of modern government and most also agree that Boone County’s 911 services could definitely use an upgrade (for the record, I had to use our 911 services last week and got right through with no wait time whatsoever), many are leery of the way in which this upgrade is being sought. For starters, there are concerns that the tax will be indefinite, since there is no sunset provision in the proposed tax. This means that after the money has been raised and the new upgrades have been paid for, the tax would remain in place. This would then become a slush fund for any county official that could come up with a plausible way to spend the money. And I think we all know that governments are all too eager to come up with different ways to spend our money for our supposed benefit.

Of course, Keep Columbia Free urges you to vote “NO” on this tax increase. Send the government back to the drawing board and demand that they return with a more reasonable plan.