Montgomery County Emergency Services District No. 8's Proposition A
Now that Early Voting has begun for the November 3, 2020 election, inquiries have been made regarding Montgomery County Emergency Services District No. 8’s Proposition A which appears on the ballot for voters registered within the territorial jurisdiction of the District.
The following summary is for informational purposes only and is not intended to sway voters either way, as it is up to the voters to decide if it is appropriate for the District to receive the additional sales tax revenue.
Proposition A asks voters to vote for or against the following proposition:
“The increase in the rate of the local sales and use tax imposed by Montgomery County Emergency Services District No. 8 from one percent (1.0%) to one and a half percent (1.5%).”
The proposition text itself provides no context for the proposed sales tax increase.
Therefore, the following additional information is offered.
Montgomery County Emergency Services District No. 8 is the governmental entity that collects property tax and sales tax to fund the operations of the District fire department - the South Montgomery Fire Department.
The District is managed by a five-member Board of Commissioners appointed by the Montgomery County Commissioners Court and is responsible for providing fire suppression and rescue services in a portion of Montgomery County.
After several years of collecting a 1.0% sales and use tax in addition to ad valorem property tax, the District Board determined that increasing the sales tax to 1.5% would let the District generate additional revenue to fund the addition of personnel, fire stations, and equipment to keep up with current population growth.
The District, as a unit of local government, is allowed to collect sales and use tax if voters approve such collection.
In 2011 the voters authorized the District to collect 1.0% sales and use tax.
This year voters are asked to consider an increase in the sales tax rate. .
Please note that the District’s total sales tax cannot be increased above the combined total limit of 8.25% sales tax: 6.25% for the State of Texas and up to 2.0% for local government.
There are some areas of the District where the sales tax limit of 8.25% has already been reached due to overlapping rates imposed by other local governmental entities.
In those areas, the District’s increase, if approved by voters, would NOT take effect.
The District is not allowed to increase the total sales tax above the 8.25% limit.
This proposition was originally planned for the May uniform election date, and the District planned to hold public meetings to educate the community about the proposition.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic not only postponed most local elections to the November 3rd general election but also made it impossible to hold public meetings regarding the election.