November 15, 2017

City looks at removing sales tax cap

By Neal A. Shipman
Farmer Editor

Two years after Watford City voters overwhelming approved increasing the city sales tax to 1½ percent, the Watford City City Council could be asking voters in June to make a change to the tax. The change would be to remove the $25 cap that is currently in place on purchases in the city limits.
During the city council’s monthly meeting on Monday, Nov. 3, the council approved Bethany Devlin, Gene Veeder, Doug Bolken, Greg Noll and Dan Kelly to the Home Rule Charter committee to explore the option of removing the $25 cap.
“When the city sales tax was increased a half a cent in 2014, we decided to leave the cap in place,” stated Justin Voll, city mayor. “We were naive as to what leaving that cap in place would mean to the Rough Rider Fund.”
According to Voll, contractors and other large purchasers have been taking advantage of that cap which has resulted in significant refunds from the Rough Rider Fund. And those refunds have impacted the city’s ability to fund future projects.

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