Mayor Says Perry Relies On Local Option Sales Tax Revenue

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PERRY, Iowa  --  They say in this world nothing is certain but death and taxes, but the mayor of Perry doesn't like to even use the "T" word for what will be voted on in November.

"To me, a tax is always something that's imposed on the populous by a governing body, and what's unique about this tax is that it's a tax that the people vote to put upon themselves," said Mayor Jay Pattee.

But it is a tax, and it's been a reality in Perry for many years.

"Perry probably has one of the longest-standing local option sales taxes in the state of Iowa," said Pattee. "We voted it in, and when I say we, I mean the people of Perry voted in a local option sales tax in 1999."

It was passed again in 2010 and it's set to expire at the end of 2019.

"We don't want our sales tax to lapse, and so we are going with other cities, communities in the county to get it on the ballot, so that before our current tax runs out, in other words, we're being proactive," said Pattee. "We'll get it back on the ballot, so we can extend it beyond the sunset."

The mayor says the revenue the city gets from the local option sales tax is essential for maintaining the community.

"Our median income is probably the lowest per capita of any city in Dallas County, or one of the lowest, and we've really come to rely on the local option sales tax to help us maintain our buildings, do a lot of the repairs to the streets."