Commissioners asking for tax increase for District Attorney

By David Rinehart –(Published: August 31, 2017) Huerfano voters will determine this November whether the sales tax will be raised by one half of one percent for purchases in the county to raise revenue to increase the Third Judicial District Attorney’s (DA) budget.

The Huerfano Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) approved a resolution at their regular meeting Tuesday to put a tax increase question on the ballot.

The ballot question asks for taxes to be increased by $275,000 and, “dedicated primarily to support the operation of the DA’s office within the county.”

The ballot question, if approved, would also create a one half of one percent “use” tax. Currently, Huerfano County does not charge a use tax. A “use” tax is charged on many large purchases made out of the county of goods brought in and used within the county. The best example of a purchase that would be subject to the new tax is a new car purchased outside the county.

County Administrator John Galusha estimated the revenue from just the proposed “use” tax is between $50,000 and $100,000. “We don’t have a comparison as we currently do not charge a use tax,” Galusha said.

Thus, the voters are being asked to raise taxes $325,000 – $375,000 for the DA. Huerfano County budgeted $133,000 for 2017 for the DA, but will end up contributing about $190,000 for the year.

The Signature asked what the county would do with all the extra money if the tax issue passed. “My two priorities would be, getting a raise for the Detention Officers, and then broadband,” Galusha said.