To the editor:
Residents and Farmers of the unincorporated areas of Hamilton County, Ellsworth, Webster City and Stratford:
On Aug. 2 at your polling place, Hamilton County residents will have the opportunity to vote to continue the 1 percent Local Option Sales and Service Tax in your area. This issue must come to a vote every 10 years. The funds generated from the Local Option Sales Tax, over the past ten years have helped build your county jail, provide annual support funds for all county libraries, fund community enhancements, improve the county fairgrounds, repair county road bridges and complete paving projects.
This special election measure on Aug. 2 will ask if the following measure should be adopted: To authorize imposition of a local sales and service tax in the unincorporated areas in the County of Hamilton at the rate of 1 percent to be effective on July 1, 2012 until June 30, 2022. Last November, the issue failed on the general ballot in some areas and the unincorporated area, but passed in some county communities. Communities that passed the measure in November 2010 by 51 percent assured the continuation this Local Option Sales Tax at 1 percent for the next 10 years.
A "yes" vote on this measure in each of the remaining areas will authorize the county to continue to collect the Local Option Sales Tax revenues in which 20 percent are allocated for property tax relief for the rural basic fund and the remainder for county maintenance or capital improvement projects throughout the County.
A "no" vote in your area means that your area will not collect the 1 percent sales tax on purchases, but any tax funds collected from the Local Option Sales Tax county wide, will not be returned to your area by project expenditures.
Webster City residents will also be asked to vote on this measure. Webster City's passage of the continuation of the measure generates 74 percent of the funds contributed to the county's total of sales tax generated by consumer activity within the community.
The unincorporated areas of Hamilton County generate about 1 percent of the local option sales tax funds while the other 25 percent is generated by Hamilton's smaller communities. For 26 percent sales tax contribution, the rural communities and unincorporated areas receive back about 35 percent in the distributions through projects and improvements.
The areas in which a special election will be held are Ellsworth, Webster City, Stratford and the unincorporated areas of Hamilton County. We believe all individuals should participate in the process that shapes the direction of our communities and rural areas. Please vote on this measure in your special election Aug. 2.
Hamilton County Farm Bureau Board of