Earlier this year, the Town announced that we’ve seen a steady decline in sales tax revenue growth. As the year has progressed, this decline has continued and has led to a second round of reductions to the Town’s budget.
As you may know, sales tax is the Town’s main source of revenue (accounting for 87% of all taxes collected) and provides funding for the many services and amenities enjoyed by residents and visitors, including police protection and public safety; road and traffic enhancements and improvements; parks, trails and recreation facilities; cultural performances and classes; community events and more
To address this decline and keep budget revenues and expenditures balanced, Town Council passed an ordinance on July 16 to reduce 2018 expenditures by an additional $2 million. This reduction is being distributed across all departments and affects both internal operations and some external projects and initiatives. These reductions include, but are not limited to:
- Several open Town positions that are not safety sensitive (excluding law enforcement, public works, etc.) will not be filled in 2018
- Reduction of part-time staffing budgets in the Cultural Department
- Elimination of many employee recognition initiatives and events
- Town-wide reductions to budgets for employee conferences and training, mileage, office supplies and meeting expenses
- Elimination of the Holiday Carriage Ride program
- The Town’s Citizen Survey will be moved from a two-year schedule to a three-year schedule
- Deferral of some Town projects, including the Town’s contract for external marketing and the Economic Development Division’s retail study, as well as a reduction in Cultural marketing expenditures
In addition, fees may be implemented for some previously free services and existing fees/ticket prices could be increased to help offset the need for additional budget reductions.
In June, the United States Supreme Court did rule that states can now collect sales tax from most online retailers. Although this may increase future revenues, it will take some time for necessary legislation to be passed to allow for collection of these taxes.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
To help keep your local economy strong, we encourage you to #ChooseParker! Did you know that when you make a $100 purchase in Parker at an independent, local store, $48 stays in your community (including payroll, goods/services purchased, profits spent local by owners, and charitable contributions)?
A chain restaurant/store located in Parker keeps $14 local, while only $1 of a $100 online purchase comes back to Parker. So, Choose Parker to keep your tax dollars local while supporting Parker’s distinct business community.