On August 19th the Larimer County Commissioners formally adopted a resolution to ask voters to extend the .015 percent jail sales tax, which currently generates $7.5 million a year and is scheduled to expire at the end of the year. The tax would only provide for ongoing maintenance and operations of the jail. The High Park fire in 2012 and the floods of 2013 have strained the County’s resources and the sales tax extension will ensure the County is able to provide other services. Note: In 2008 the Sheriff’s Department accounted for 55 percent of the County’s budget. That year the County asked voters to approve a tax to build a detox and mental health facility at the jail but it lost by a 62 to 38 percent margin. Will voters approve 3 tax measures this fall? That remains to be seen.
On July 29th the County Commissioners unanimously voted to put two questions on the November 4th ballot. One resolution extended and amended the Help Preserve Open Spaces (HPOS) sales tax Initiative
If approved by voters in November, the Help Preserve Open Spaces sales and use tax of quarter-cent will extend for 25 years beginning January 1, 2019 when the current sales and use tax sunsets. The amended issue changes city/county revenue splits to an even 50-50. To date the County’s portion of the current tax has conserved about 33,000 acres in fee title and conservation easements, as well as 83 miles of trail.
The BOCC also certified a measure for November’s ballot for a county-wide sales and use tax to finance a new Animal Care and Control Facility. A citizens’ petition collected signatures to bring the measure forward. The new facility would be built on land owned by the Larimer Humane Society. The 0.1 percent sales and use tax begins January 1, 2015 and ends when the debt is paid or by December 31st, 2020. The current Larimer Humane Society shelter was built in 1974.