The cities of Brainerd and Baxter may join forces in pursuing a local option sales tax in 2006.
The Brainerd City Council Monday was informed by City Administrator Dan Vogt that the city of Baxter would like to meet in mid-January to discuss a joint effort in pursuing a local option sales tax.
In October the Brainerd City Council directed city staffers to gather information on putting the sales tax question on the ballot for the 2006 general election, with an eye toward funding the expansion of the city's wastewater treatment facility.
Local option sales taxes need both voter and legislative approval. The Brainerd City Council also would have to approve putting the sales tax question on the ballot.
During this year's legislative session the city of Baxter was denied its bid for a .05 percent sales tax, even after voters in 2004 approved the tax by a vote of 2,177-1,559. Baxter expected to generate $15 million over 12 years with the sales tax.
Baxter also had planned to use a portion of the sales tax funds for the expanded wastewater treatment plant, as well as an additional water tower, a satellite fire station and expanded wastewater treatment capacity.
In denying Baxter's sales tax, the Legislature told Baxter officials that it would be preferred that Brainerd and Baxter present a joint sales tax proposal.
In other action, the council:
Approved the purchase of a $30,000 tanker unit for the Brainerd Fire Department. The city would pay $12,000 of the cost, with grants from the DNR and federal government covering the rest.
Set a public hearing for 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 5 for a $100,000 revolving loan request from Plastics Plus Inc. for the purchase of machinery.
Adjourned to a budget meeting at 7 p.m. on Nov. 28 at Brainerd City Hall, with a closed union negotiations session to follow.
Appointed Vogt and council member Bob Olson to the Brainerd Regional Human Services Center master plan committee.
Directed city staffers to pursue purchasing additional industrial park land.
Set a Safety and Public Works Committee special meeting at 3 p.m. on Dec. 12 to discuss city sidewalks, the Buffalo Hills Lane improvement project and Beaver Dam utilities.
Called for applicants for the Cable Advisory Board and the Charter Commission.
Was informed that city hall would be closed Thursday and Friday for the Thanksgiving holiday.
MATT ERICKSON can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5857.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.