By Mike Scott
The April municipal election is likely to be confusing for voters.
As we reported last week, the Clark County Commissioners are asking voters to vote “NO” on a question on the Tuesday, April 5 ballot.
Clark County could lose approximately $206,312 per year in local tax revenue unless voters reject the ballot measure, which reads: “Shall the County of Clark discontinue applying the collecting of sales tax on the titling of motor vehicles, trailers, boats and outboard motors that were purchased from a source other than a licensed Missouri dealer? Approval of this measure will result in a reduction of local revenue to provide vital services for the County of Clark and it will place Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats and trailers at a competitive disadvantage top non-Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats and trailers.”
Early in 2012, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled that the sales tax could not be collected on purchases of motor vehicles, boats, motors, and trailers from outside the State of Missouri. It did allow localities with a voter-approved “use tax” to continue to collect that revenue.
In July of 2013, Governor Jay Nixon signed legislation eliminating use tax on motor vehicles, trailers, boats and motors, and replacing it with a sales tax. That law required localities that had not previously approved a use tax to hold a vote before November 2016, to decide whether or not to continue the tax. Unless continuing the tax is approved, localities must stop collecting the tax in 2017.
The City of Kahoka stands to lose about $23,252 in local tax revenue if voters do not approve continuing the tax.
Here’s where it gets confusing.
The City of Kahoka needs a “Yes” vote to approve continuing the tax.
In addition to seeing the county tax question on the ballot, Kahoka voters will see a nearly identical ballot question, seeking a “Yes” vote to continue to the tax. The actual Kahoka ballot reads: Shall the City of Kahoka continue applying and collecting the local sales tax on the titling of motor vehicles, trailers, boats, and outboard motors that were purchased from a source other than a licensed Missouri dealer? Continuation of this measure will not result in a reduction of local revenue to provide for vital services for the City of Kahoka and it will not place Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats, and trailers at a competitive disadvantage to non-Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats, and trailers”
We have boldfaced the differences between Clark County’s and Kahoka’s ballot. Both the city and the county want to continue to receive the tax revenue.
In addition, the City Wyaconda also wants a “No” vote. Voters there will see same the local tax question, using the same language as the Clark County’s, with “City of Wyaconda” replacing “County of Clark”.
Also on the ballot will be election of several municipal positions.
As previously reported, current Kahoka Aldermen Larry Young and Greg McVeigh will be unopposed for re-election.
In Wyaconda, Rex Link, Cookie Howell and Sarah Lamb are on the ballot in the East Ward, and Heather Benner and Tammy Hammond are in the West Ward.
In Alexandria’s mayoral race, Ronald Gates in unopposed. Cynthia Colwell is unopposed for Clerk, and Barbary Colwell not challenged in Ward 1. In Ward 2, Russell Gates and Wallace Bryant are on the ballot.
In Revere, Dale Clark is unopposed for Mayor, and James Engles and David Hoenig are running for at-large aldermen positions.
Wayland has two at-large aldermen positions open, with three candidates on the ballot: James Boatman, Patty Golliher and Sherry Bunker.
Luray has two candidates, Rodney Nichols and Gary Brown running for three available Village Trustee positions.
Mary Ann Plenge will be on the ballot for a director’s seat for the Clark County Health Department.
The Clark County Rural Water District has one candidate: Jerry L. Miller is seeking a board position.
Danny R. Colwell is the only candidate for the Wayland Special Road District board.
The Clark County Ambulance District has positions available form District 2 and District 5. In District 2, Linda Bertram in unopposed, and in District %, Troy Gregory will face John Stephen Malone.
Clark County R-1 School will not hold an election, as only incumbent board members Craig Hunziker and Mark Plenge file for office.
A number of voters in western Clark County will vote for two Scotland County R-1 School board seats. On the ballot are Trinity Davis, Christy Aylward and Sherryl Davis.
Those SCR-1 voters are also being asked to approve a $4 million dollar bond issue to fund a number of facility improvements.