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To repair roads Pima Co may hike property tax

Posted at 7:52 PM, May 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-17 22:52:16-04

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Now that Tucson voters have approved a sales tax hike for roads, police and firefighters, Pima County is considering a property tax hike to pay for road repair.

Pima County has complained for years that state gas tax money for roads does not cover the county's needs.

That tax has been stuck at 18 cents per gallon for 26 years.

Deputy Administrator Carmine DeBonis says, “Additionally the taxes that are collected by the state for gas a vehicle licensing come back to the counties and city jurisdictions but they've been diverted for a period of years."

The morning after Tucson voters passed a sales tax hike in part for roads, Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry proposed a plan to raise county property tax.

Details of the plan are spelled out on the county's website.

Deputy Administrator Carmine DeBonis says the county held back to not influence the city election.

The county says says the first year tax boost would be about 18 dollars a year for a house worth $153,000 and drop in years that follow. That's a median value.  Half the home values in the county are worth more, half are worth less.

DeBonis says the road money will help more than unincorporated parts of the county. Because you pay county property tax even if you live inside a city's borders some of the money will go to places like Tucson, Oro Valley and Marana.

Pima County had to put most of its money into major arterials.  What they plan to do with the tax increase is use state gas tax money on the big roads and then take money from this tax increase and use it on what people have been crying for for awhile: repairs to the side streets.

Voters won't decide this tax hike.  It's up to County Supervisors, but viewers on KGUN9's Facebook say no way.

Shay Fowler wrote: "They have GOT to stop with these property taxes."

Michael Silva says, "No more taxes! Better management needed!"

Supervisors should approve or reject the hike as they complete the county budget later this month.