Manhattan City Leaders make their case for sales tax hike

MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) -- In a few weeks, Manhattan voters will be asked whether or not the City should raise its sales tax and, on Monday, city leaders broke down how that extra money would be spent.

(WIBW/Danielle Martin)

The 0.3% sales tax increase would bring the overall sales tax rate to 9.25% and is expected to raise $3.3 million in the first year.

The first year revenues are earmarked for six major infrastructure projects and Assistant City Manager Dennis Marstall contends doing them now could save the City - and taxpayers - money in the long run.

"The key is that we have found some partners to help us with these six projects, including the federal government, the state government, and even K-State," Marstall said.

The City also pointed out that a quarter of its sales tax revenue comes from people who live outside of Manhattan. Therefore, they say, raising sales taxes, as opposed to property taxes, shifts some of the tax burden to people who are visiting the community and away from those who live there.

"Our proposal to the citizens is let us know if we want to leverage some dollars and other partners. Do we want to use it on property tax, sales tax, or even forego some of these projects? It's the time of the year for elections, and this is going to be opportunity, we want to hear from the voters."

To view the sales tax initiative, click here.