The Marysville City Council hasn’t approved a specific sales tax increase for the November ballot, but many see it as a foregone conclusion. Whether it will pass or not is another question.
The city of around 12,000 residents is bounded on three sides by levees and rivers and did not benefit from the residential housing boom that bolstered the tax base of Yuba City across the river.
The recent loss of three auto dealerships made a city budget shortfall even worse. The police department and the fire department are understaffed and infrastructure upgrades and repairs have been delayed. The lack of revenue weighs on City Council member Christopher Pedigo.
“We have a moral obligation to do what we say we’ll do,” Pedigo said, about providing basic services to residents.
While many businesses say they will be at a competitive disadvantage with a one cent sales tax increase, other business owners disagree.
“It’s a penny on the dollar. It’s not that big a deal,” Brenda Robbins said. She runs a copy shop in downtown Marysville. She says the quality of life will greatly improve with the infusion of money, much of which Robbins says will come from people passing through town rather than residents.
The Sutter-Yuba Chamber of Commerce, which represents Marysville businesses, is neutral on the question of a sales tax increase. They plan to hear from both sides before making a decision on whether to endorse a ballot measure.