Archive for Wednesday, July 25, 2001

City Council to consider excise tax

July 25, 2001

In an attempt to secure funds for street improvements, the city of Basehor is considering installing an excise tax and a property tax increase of five mills.

The excise tax would be placed on new developments in the city and used for improving the main collector and arterial streets surrounding the developments.

Basehor City Codes Administrator Mike Hooper said he is proposing an excise tax of nine cents per square foot for each development.

The Tonganoxie City Council recently passed a similar excise tax, but only charged five cents per square foot.

"By our estimates, at a cost of nine cents per square foot for improvements like curb and guttering, a five cent tax would not cover all the expenses for the roads," Hooper said. "At nine cents, we can get it all out of the way now."

Developers will have the choice of paying the excise tax as the lots are built or when the building permits for the development are issued, Hooper said.

The excise tax has been placed on the agenda for the Basehor Planning Commission meeting on Aug.7. During the meeting, the city staff hope to get feedback on the proposal, Hooper said.

The excise tax will barely affect existing property owners in the city. Under Hooper's proposal, the only way a property owner would be assessed an excise tax is if the owner chose to make improvements to their home.

"It won't affect the existing property owners unless they make improvements to their property over an assessed percentage of their property evaluation," Hooper said.

If a property owner has a home valued at $100,000 and chooses to make $51,000 worth of improvements then they will be assessed an excise tax, Hooper said.

"It would have to be a major improvement to fall under the excise tax," Hooper said.

The decision to pursue an excise tax was made so the existing residents of Basehor would not have to pay for street improvements when new developments occur, Hooper said.

To implement the excise tax, the City Council must pass a charter ordinance and hold a public hearing. The excise tax will not be placed on the Basehor City Council meeting agenda in August, but could it could go before the council in September.

In addition to the excise tax, city officials are also considering a five-mill levy increase. The funds from the increase would go toward the improvement of roads, most likely 155th Street or 158th Street, Hooper said

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