Azusa : Tax Issues to Go on Ballot

The City Council has instructed City Administrator Julio Fuentes to prepare tax measures for the June ballot to ease a budget squeeze and pay for a list of projects such as repairs to streets and sidewalks.

Mayor Eugene Moses said he could support a proposed increase in the landfill franchise tax, but not other suggested tax increases "until the staff is more responsible and cuts the fat out of City Hall."

However, Fuentes told the council that $1.4 million has already been trimmed from the budget this year and that further reductions would affect the quality of municipal services. He suggested that voters be given a list of tax measures, including a statement of how the money would be spent, so that they can decide whether they want to pay higher taxes for improvements and services.

Fuentes said that additional revenue could come from a tax on utility bills, formation of maintenance districts, increases in the hotel and motel room tax, and changes in business license fees. The council, by a 4-1 vote, instructed the city administrator to prepare a list of revenue measures and expenditures that it can consider for the June 7 ballot.

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