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Independence voters approve tax issues, mixed results elsewhere

2 of 4 municipalities pass use taxes Tuesday
Stock Independence Fire Truck 2
Posted at 4:42 PM, Nov 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-03 17:42:56-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Independence voters signed off on two ballot questions related to sales taxes for emergency services Tuesday at the polls.

Voters overwhelmingly signed off on a half-cent sales tax to support the Independence Fire Department. The tax, which replaces an existing one-eighth-cent sales tax, goes into effect April 1, 2022.

More than 65% of voters passed Question 1, according to unofficial results from the Jackson County Board of Elections.

The Independence Police Department also received clearance from voters to spend the roughly $3 million it receives from a use tax passed in 2019 to hire new officers, buy equipment and other departmental expenses.

Nearly 75% of voters signed off on Question 2, which amends the 2-year-old Proposition P that also funds the city’s no-kill animal shelter.

Less than 11.8% of nearly 67,000 registered voters in Independence turned out for the election.

The other two Jackson County questions centered on use taxes in Raytown and Lone Jack.

Raytown voters passed the use tax, which will require online retailers to collect sales tax equal to that of brick-and-mortar retailers, for digital purchases. The question passed by a 54-46 margin.

Lone Jack rejected its own use tax with 69% of voters saying no.

Tax measures outside Jackson County also had mixed results.

North of the river, voters in Kearney passed a use tax by a less than 5% margin, according to unofficial results from the Clay County Board of Election Commissioners, while voters in Parkville also shot down a use tax with 64% voting no, according to the Platte County Board of Elections unofficial results.

Voters in Oakwood Park and the Holt Fire Protection District rejected tax levies questions.