Fire Sales Tax Facts

The November ballot for Cape Girardeau city voters will include a tax renewal to support critical needs for public safety services in the City of Cape Girardeau through December 2035. Visit cityofcape.org/firesalestax for additional information.

Keep Cape Safe
Cape Girardeau is fortunate to have outstanding public safety personnel helping to protect its more than 38,000 residents and estimated 100,000-person daytime population. To maintain critical services for our citizens, we need to provide public safety personnel with adequate facilities and vehicles. Find information for the Fire Tax and Public Safety Trust Fund below. Please contact us with comments and questions.

VOTE November 4, 2014  
The following will be the last item on your November 4, 2014 ballot:
[Download Full Sample Ballot]

PROPOSITION – Shall the City of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, extend the imposition of the City’s existing fire sales tax of one-eighth of one percent (1/8 of 1%) beyond its current expiration date for the purpose of providing revenues for the operation of the Cape Girardeau Municipal Fire Department? This one-eighth of one percent (1/8 of 1%) sales tax extension shall expire on December 31, 2035.   YES [ ]    NO [ ]

All revenue generated by the Fire Sales Tax is used for the Fire Department. Some General Fund revenue otherwise designated for the Fire Department has been made available to fund needs in the Police Department via the Public Safety Trust Fund.

Keep the Tax the Same
Voting YES to renew the Fire Tax will not increase the current tax rate. The first Fire Tax approved by voters in 2004 was a one-quarter of one percent sales tax to fund fire and police department expenses. Half of that revenue source, which is one-eighth of one percent, is permanent and used for operating expenses. The other half will expire Dec. 31, 2014 and has been used for capital improvements associated with the fire and police departments. Find a summary and full accounting posted online.

Keep Facilities & Vehicles Up-To-Date
Plans for Fire Tax Funds & Public Safety Trust Fund, 2014-2035

The revenue generated from this 1/8-cent sales tax renewal is expected to be $1.2 million per year. The ballot will ask voters to approve it for 21 years. Half of the funding could be used for facilities and the other half could be used to replace existing fire apparatus (fire trucks, SUVs) and police vehicles as needed, as shown below.

Vehicles and Apparatus ($600,000 per year)
Maintain public safety vehicle replacement within industry standards.

  • Replace Fire apparatus every 10-15 years as needed
  • Replace Police vehicles every 7-10 years as needed

Facilities ($600,000 per year)

Casino Revenue Commitment
Committing Fire Tax funds to facilities and vehicles would require casino funds be reserved to fund these priorities:

  • Radio interoperability: $610,000 (from this fiscal year and next)
  • Security addition at Emergency Operations Center: $100,000
  • Police Station funding: $2.8 million

Summary of Police Station Funding Sources
Since the Fire Tax cannot cover the entire Police Station, the following recaps how a replacement Police facility could be funded if the Fire Tax renewal is approved by voters in November:

Restaurant Tax:    $4.2 million
Fire Tax:                 $4.0 million
Casino Funds:       $2.8 million
Total:              $11 million

 

Additional Inquiry & Information
Please check our website for additional public safety and tax information at www.cityofcape.org. All contacts are listed online or you can use our form to submit questions or comments to staff or  the City Council.

 

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