City could raise sales tax

Published 4:32pm Monday, November 12, 2012

Just over a week after being sworn into office, a new administration for the city of Brewton will be making a decision that could raise the sales tax.

An item on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting of the council will be consideration of an ordinance that would increase sales tax by 1 cent — from 8 to 9 cents — in the city.
Mayor Yank Lovelace said the increase would help the city rebuild reserves lost in slow economic times.
“The city has lived off reserves since the recession hit,” Lovelace said. “Nobody expected the recession to last this long. It’s time now to build up the reserves for the gas department, for the sewer bond debt service and for the general fund.”
City Clerk John Angel said the sales tax proposed would help to keep certain funds for the city in the black.
“The city would get the entire one cent,” Angel said. “None of the new tax would go to the schools or anything else. The additional one cent would go directly to the city.”
Angel said if council members choose to approve the ordinance, the tax increase would go into effect at the beginning of the new year.
“Merchants would begin charging the 9 percent sales tax Jan. 1,” Angel said.
East Brewton and Atmore have sales tax set at 9 percent.
Also on Tuesday’s agenda, as of Friday, is a discussion of the Brewton Animal Control Center and Animal Shelter.
Rumors about the shelter have been circulating around the community, with Facebook posts suggesting a change in animal control.
A Friday post on the Brewton Animal Control Center’s Facebook page stated: “Contrary to a prior post, Brewton will not be losing animal control services. Our city will continue to provide the most cost-effective shelter program possible for our citizens. We appreciate your support as we all work together to improve every aspect of life here for residents—even the four-legged ones.”
Following the post claiming non-closure of the shelter, fans of the page expressed thanks to whoever was responsible for keeping the shelter open and providing the service for the city.
The Brewton City Council meetings are open to the public and are held in the council chambers at Atmore City Hall on Douglas Avenue on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. Meeting time is 4:30 p.m.

  • KelJen

    Yet another reason to shop in Pensacola. When will politicians realize that high sales taxes drive business out of town? We already have a ton of empty stores in Brewton; this will only lead to more.

    The giant Wal-Mart was supposed to be a cash cow for Brewton. Instead it put other businesses out of business, like Winn Dixie, and the store is pretty empty on weekdays.

    Raising taxes is short sighted leadership. If the city needs cash, it needs to cut expenses, not emulate the federal government.

  • JennyL

    When new businesses realize they have to charge a high sales tax, they often look elsewhere. This is certainly not an incentive to attract new business.

    Meanwhile, none of this would go to schools? I guess they need more money to pay the people who took two years to pave Belleville Avenue.

    Cut the incompetent city employees if you want to save money.

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