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Stockton City Leaders Sold on Sales Tax Increase, But Not Residents

STOCKTON—

What many Stockton residents are saying loud and clear is they don’t trust this city council or future councils at all.

“I am not for the tax because I don’t know how they are going to spend it. They have never spent it right in the past,” said Stockton resident Gary Malloy.

Bottom line, they say Stockton’s citizens are barely getting by as it is in this tough economy.

The council says if Measure A – a three-quarter cent sales tax increase – does not pass, they will have to make some uncomfortable cuts: 4 million from the library, 2.8 million from recreation and 4.2 million from the fire department.

Tom Ruemmler says it’s a scare tactic to get people to vote yes.

“Their greed is they just want to continue bringing in more revenue instead of looking at their expenses,” Ruemmler said.

Malloy has another option besides taxing residents.

“I want them to get rid of the arena the marina and the parking garages, and stop paying that 10 million dollars. That would get us at least flat. I think if they did that citizens would be more apt to pay the tax,” Malloy said.

A few of the residents would rather the council force the insurance companies that backed the bonds to absorb the $11 million deficit. They believe that if the companies didn’t back the bonds, the City of Stockton wouldn’t be in bankruptcy.

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