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Council Backs Bid for Bigger Revenue Cut

Cities should get a larger portion of the state’s sales tax, City Council members maintain.

In support of that view, the council has adopted a resolution urging support in the Legislature for an effort by Sen. Richard Mountjoy (R-Arcadia) to redirect an additional 1% of the state’s sales tax to local governments.

The council took action after City Manager Darrell Essex explained that the League of California Cities endorses Mountjoy’s effort.

“Over the last few years, cities have received less tax revenues from the state due to shifts in state-controlled funding disbursements,” Essex wrote in a memo.

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“For Cypress, the loss in revenues has been approximately $1.6 million a year for the last five years. Early indications for the next state budget are inadequate revenues, thus cities again become susceptible to further revenue reductions.”

Essex said that a Mountjoy bill, which would have shifted more sales tax to local governments, failed to get out of legislative committee. Opponents of the measure contended that the state cannot afford to lose so much tax money.

Essex said that with support from Cypress and other cities, Mountjoy will “find another vehicle to promote the sales tax revenue shift.”

In a telephone interview from Sacramento, Nancy Leneis, Mountjoy’s chief of staff, said the senator hopes to amend some other bill this year to include the sales tax shift.

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“The senator now has the support of about 200 cities,” she said. Leneis said cities would share in the additional sales tax on a population basis.


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