Mayor Keller reacts to City Council passing tax increase | KOB 4
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Mayor Keller reacts to City Council passing tax increase

Kai Porter
March 06, 2018 07:25 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Albuquerque City Council passed a three-eighths of a percent gross receipts tax hike Monday evening by an 8-1 vote meant to help plug a $40 million budget deficit, as well as hire more police officers.

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It will take effect on July 1, and at least one small business owner isn't worried that it will hurt sales.

"I've worked in Old Town for almost 40 years now and I've never seen (it) any worse that it is now. There's crime all over the city and we have to get a handle on it," said Debbie Ball, owner of The Candy Lady.

The gross tax receipts tax increase adds 38 cents per $100 dollars spent. Ball isn't too worried about that figure driving her customer's away.

"It's so little it's not going to affect us that much because we automatically figure it into our taxes, so it does have to be passed along," she said.

Mayor Tim Keller is also reacting to the tax increase which is expected to generate $43 million in its first year. 60 percent of money raised from the tax will have to go towards law enforcement; the mayor doesn't have to sign off on it.

"We always prefer things to have a public opportunity, a chance for folks to chime in,” said Keller, who had promised during his campaign not to raise taxes without the approval of voters. “But I do respect what council did. By an 8-1 bipartisan vote they sent a veto-proof bill that says they are going to fund fighting crime right now, and I respect that. We gave them a lot of options and they chose the one with the most urgency, and that I agree with."

APD's plan calls for hiring 400 more officers over the next four years at a cost of $88 million dollars.

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Kai Porter

Copyright 2018 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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