St Louis County Proposition H (2008)

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St Louis County Proposition H was a measure on the November 4 ballot in [[St. Louis County, Missouri ballot measures|St. Louis County. The measure sought to impose a 1.85% sales tax on out of state purchases made by St Louis County businesses.

This measure was defeated with 55.40 percent of voters against it[1]

The breakdown of how the additional funds would have been used in the first year, as listed by the St Louis Post-Dispatch:

  • $9 million to improve emergency communications for suburban police and firemen, allowing them to talk to each other even when outside their own jurisdictions.
  • $2 million would help make county and municipal parks more accessible to the elderly and disabled.
  • $5 million to general county government spending and $10 million to municipalities.
  • $4 million to “incubators,” or start-up programs, for new businesses.[2]

Text of Question

For the purposes of enhancing county and municipal public safety, parks, and job creation and enhancing local government services, shall the county be authorized to collect a local use tax equal to the total of the existing county sales tax rate of one and eighty-five hundredths percent (1.85%), provided that if the county sales tax is repealed, reduced or raised by voter approval, the local use tax rate shall also be repealed, reduced or raised by the same voter action? Fifty percent of the revenue shall be used by the county throughout the county for improving and enhancing public safety, park improvements, and job creation, and fifty percent shall be used for enhancing local government services. The county shall be required to make available to the public an audited comprehensive financial report detailing the management and use of the countywide portion of the funds each year. A use tax is the equivalent of a sales tax on purchases from out-of-state sellers by in-state buyers and on certain taxable business transactions. A use tax return shall not be required to be filed by persons whose purchases from out-of-state vendors do not in total exceed two thousand dollars in any calendar year.[3]

Endorsements

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch is urging voters to say "no" to Proposition H, saying "with the economy in a recession, now is not the time to ask for $30 million from St. Louis employers. Higher operating costs increase the pressure to cut jobs or to move a business elsewhere. Voters should say No on Proposition H."[4]

References