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Council to add tax increase request to April ballot

$20 million bond would go toward repair work on several aging bridges located inside the city limits.

Posted: Jan 14, 2020 9:33 AM
Updated: Jan 14, 2020 9:50 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) --  Regardless of what the St. Joseph School District decides, it appears as though St. Joseph voters will see at least one tax increase proposal on the April ballot.

At a work session Monday afternoon, council members unanimously agreed to language  that would place a $20 million bond question before voters that would be dedicated toward funding bridge repair in the city limits.

The Public Works department has identified bridges at North 11th and  North13th St along with another at Lovers Lane that all span the Parkway system for repair. Also included in the work would be the King Hill bridge to South Side St. Joseph.

There had been concerns that this proposal could be on the same ballot as a tax increase the St. Joseph School District is considering to build new high schools. However, council members said they've delayed work on the bridges long enough.

"If we don't do anything about those bridges, we're going to have to start closing a lot of roads ," said council member Spanky O'Dell, who was acting as deputy mayor on Monday in Mayor Bill McMurray's absence. "It's time the city buckle down and put it up to the vote of the people. They can decide if they want to get these bridges fixed or if they want roads to start closing and have to drive the long way around."

At its regularly scheduled meeting Monday night, the measure for the tax increase was placed under first reading. It will be up for a final vote at their next meeting in two weeks.

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Temperatures are on the cool side this morning with lows in the 30s. A few areas of patchy frost will be possible in extreme NW Missouri this morning. Sunshine and mild temperatures will take over this afternoon with highs in the mid 60s. Saturday will start off dry and sunny with temperatures warming back into the mid 60s. Late Saturday into Sunday shower and thunderstorm chances return. A few thunderstorms could be on the strong to severe side. Several fronts will move through the area next week giving us roller coaster temperatures. Next week looks to start off dry but rain chances will return by mid week.
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