Joplin voters facing 1/2 cent sales tax on November 5th ballot

Tax to fund pension plan for police, fire

Polls opening Tuesday across the four-states. Many key issues on ballots across the area, including Proposition B, in the City of Joplin.

The Joplin City Council tonight heard a final report on efforts to educate residents on the issue. Proposition B is the culmination of the efforts of police and fire unions combined with the city council and citizen advisory groups.

The ultimate goal of Proposition B, is to take care of the city’s existing police and fire pension, and fund it, until it’s no longer needed by those who have already retired. It’s second goal, to fund the new pension, through the LAGERS system, which is used by multiple agencies, making it easy to transfer from one department to another.

But, it does come at a cost, a sales tax, and that’s what’s on the ballot for Joplin voters. It’s a half-cent tax, and can only be used to fund the pensions. The way the tax is set up prohibits using the money for anything else. For union representatives, they’re hopeful residents will vote yes.

Jeremie Humphrey with Joplin Professional Firefighters Local 59 says “It’s been overwhelming how people can support and say, you know, I don’t support taxes, but this is for the right thing, and it’s going to the right thing, it’s in the ballot language, the money can only be used for police and fire for this issue, so, we’ve done all the work, everybody working together, to truly come up with the best plan, and I feel when the citizens see that on the ballot, it’ll be easy to mark that box yes.”

Not everyone is on board with the new tax, in our KOAM Interactive Question, we asked you if you supported Prop B or not. Larry said “No – because our crooked city government is gonna build another baseball field for their rich friends”, Blake also not in favor saying “They should stop wasting the money on all the new road construction”, and Justin, pretty straight forward, saying “No new taxes”.
Mayor Shaw wrapped it up best by simply reminding people to get out and vote, and let your voice be heard.

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