Santa Maria - North County

Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce holds survey on increased sales tax proposal

The Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce does survey on increased sales tax proposal

LOMPOC, Calif. - The Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce is asking residents if they're willing to support a sales tax to solve the budget shortfall. This comes a week after millions of dollars in proposed budget cuts were advanced by the city council.

The survey ask residents if they support a 1 percent sales tax hike being included on the voting ballots in November. 

“So as of a few minutes ago we had 586 responses, so that's a really good response, of that 77 percent were in support of a sales tax increase, so it looks like the majority is speaking,” said CEO of Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce Amber Wilson.

The Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce put the survey out to get solid data of what the community wants. 

“I'm definitely in favor of the tax,” saidLompoc resident Darrell Tullis.

The results are still pouring in but for now, with only 1 percent of the city's population who have done the survey, it looks like residents are willing to contribute to Lompoc's financial woes. 

“When you miss manage the budget like that it comes to a point and time where yes, sorry but, the citizens are going to have to foot that bill. We are at that point where now if we don't it is just going to get worse,” said Tullis.

This comes a week after the city council advanced a proposal that would make more than $3.5 million in cuts to public safety, city positions and more. Leaving a growing deficit behind. 

Among the groups that could lose funding from the cuts is the group putting on the survey, the Chamber of Commerce.

“It needs to go through because we can't just continue to make cuts, and continue to cut the quality of life in the community. We definitely can't be cutting public safety,” said Wilson.

Right now 22 percent of residents who participated still say they don't want the sales tax increase.  

“If we acquiesce to this tax all we are doing is saying, 'OK, Lompoc go ahead and spend more money irresponsibly,'” said  Lompoc community member D.A. Taylor.

The survey also asks residents if they would prefer to see the generated tax revenue go to a general fund or a special appointed fund.

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