RI County Sheriff Asks Voters to Approve Sales Tax Increase
With early voting beginning in Illinois later this week, Rock Island County officials are asking voters one last time to approve a sales tax increase. If approved, the sales tax would increase by half-a-percent, to pay for public safety.
Sheriff Gerry Bustos says currently, Rock Island County only relies on property tax revenue to fund the sheriff's office. And, raising the sales tax could ease the burden on property owners, and raise up to $7 million a year for public safety.
He says without the sales tax increase, the Rock Island County sheriff's office and courthouse will have to cut about 5 percent of its staff, or 33 employees.
Chief Judge, Walter Braud, says losing that many deputies could put the thousands of people at risk who use the courthouse each month.
Bustos says the sales tax increase would not affect medical and food sales.
Rock Island County will hold three town hall meetings about the tax referendum in October. The first meeting will be on Wednesday, October 5th, at Saint John's Lutheran Church in Rock Island, at 6:30 pm.