Mailed ballot includes city races, sales tax questions
Oct 07, 2015 | 6459 views | 0 0 comments | 87 87 recommendations | email to a friend | print
2015 Ballots
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Blanding City Council
Bluff Service Area Board of Trustees
Monticello City Council

Registered voters in San Juan County will begin receiving ballots in the mail for the November 3 general election. The election will be conducted entirely by mail-in ballots, meaning that voting can begin immediately.

As a result, the San Juan Record is including a profile of candidates, in addition to information on ballot initiatives, in this issue of the newspaper.

The off-year election features races for City Council positions in Monticello and Blanding, in addition to two open spots on the Bluff Service Area Board of Trustees.

In addition to municipal races, voters across the county have the opportunity to accept or reject a proposed .25 percent sales tax. Proceeds from the sales tax, if approved, will be earmarked for transportation expenditures.

The new sales tax is part of a two-pronged effort to address the underfunding of transportation infrastructure in Utah.

The first part of the effort, which was approved by the Utah State Legislature and signed into law by Governor Gary Herbert, converts the current 24.5 cents-per-gallon state gas tax to a 12 percent sales tax. Changing the gas tax from a per-gallon rate to a percentage sales tax is expected to increase the amount of money collected for transportation services in San Juan County by $582,000.

The second portion of the plan is a local option transportation sales tax. Counties can enact a .25 percent general sales tax for transportation, subject to voter approval.

In San Juan County, 40 percent of the revenue would go to cities and towns and 60 percent to San Juan County.

If approved, the sales tax is anticipated to generate nearly $500,000 a year for transportation.

In total, the adjustments brought about by the new proposal would generate an additional $1 million a year in San Juan County.

Officials state that it will help close the $7.3 million budget gap between transportation expenditures and transportation revenues in the county.

In addition to the transportation sales tax, voters in Blanding will vote on an extension of the .25 percent ZAP (Zoos, Arts and Parks) sales tax that is used to operate the San Juan Wellness Center.

The current tax, which was approved by voters eight years ago, generates approximately $33,000 per year. If approved, the new tax would be in effect for ten years.

In Monticello, five candidates seek the three open positions on the Monticello City Council. The positions are currently held by Scott Frost, Rick Clark, and Monte Wells. Candidates for the position include Sanford Randall, Sarah English, Nathan Chamberlain, Chris Baird, and Blaine Nebeker.

Similarly, there are three open positions on the Blanding City Council. Candidates for the position include Joe B. Lyman, Ruth Johnson, Trevor Olson, Kathrina Perkins, Travis Whatcott and Trent Herring. They seek the seats currently held by Joe B. Lyman, Kelly laws, and David Johnson.

In Bluff, there are two open seats on the service area Board of Trustees. The candidates include Wes Shook, Mark Bond, and Ed Dobson.
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