Election 2021: Littleton to vote on sales tax increase

3A would raise rate by 0.75%, first hike in nearly 50 years

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For the first time in nearly 50 years, Littleton could raise its sales tax rate if a measure on the 2021 ballot passes. 
 
Ballot Issue 3A would raise the city’s sales tax from 3% to 3.75%, a 0.75 percentage point increase. City officials say the increase is vital for replenishing the city’s Capital Projects Fund, which is set to hit $0 by 2025. 
 
That fund pays for city infrastructure projects such as road repair and upkeep of public buildings as well as maintenance for police fleets. If voters approve 3A, city staff projects the tax increase will bring in $9 million annually for the projects fund. 
 
Other projects that will be funded with the tax increase include:
 
• Mineral & Santa Fe intersection improvements.
• Downtown streetscape and parking improvements.
• Sustainable landscape irrigation and conservation improvements.
• Body cameras for all city police officers to comply with the recent state law.
 
All nine candidates vying for a seat on city council in the ongoing election have been unanimous in their support of 3A and warned that if it fails the council will be forced to make heavy and painful cuts to existing budgets and programs. 
 
“I think everybody recognizes the importance of it,” said Patrick Driscoll, running for re-election in council District 1. Driscoll said he was integral to getting 3A on this year’s ballot after city staff mulled putting it off for at least another year. 
 
During an Oct. 12 city council meeting, current council members unanimously reaffirmed their support for 3A with a largely symbolic vote to approve a resolution stating council’s endorsement of a yes vote on 3A. 
 
“No one likes to pay taxes, myself included,” said Mark Rudnicki, an at-large council member whose term expires in November, during the meeting. “Conversely, no one likes decrepit streets, crumbling sidewalks, aging public buildings, rusted-out police cars, or no money for amenities that make living in Littleton pleasurable and safe.” 
 
Voters have until 7 p.m. on Nov. 2 to drop off their ballot. For more information on how to vote, including ballot drop-off locations, go to tinyurl.com/littleton2021 and select “General Election Information.”

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