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Upcoming Vote - Local Option Sales and Service Tax

By: City of Bondurant
Date Published: Saturday, June 1, 2019

Voters of Bondurant will be asked to vote in a special election on August 6, 2019, on a measure that would impose a Local Sales and Services Tax at the rate of one percent (1%) in the incorporated area of Bondurant.

What are some considerations when determining how to vote?

  • Local Option Sales and Services Tax (LOSST) is a one percent (1%) tax that is imposed on the same basis as the State sales and services tax (no tax on most grocery food items, prescription drugs, vehicles, fuel, farm equipment, professional services (such as medical or legal services), hotels/motels, etc.).
  • The LOSST rate cannot exceed 1%.

Who will pay the LOSST? Am I paying it already?

  • Yes. As of July 1, 2019, you are already paying this tax when you purchase anything in areas where the tax has been adopted (July 1, 2018, for the Dallas County portion of West Des Moines) and most often when you purchase online. As you may recall, voters in Altoona, Pleasant Hill, Des Moines, West Des Moines, Windsor Heights, Mitchellville, Alleman, Elkhart, Carlisle, Polk City, and Runnells have previously passed the Local Sales and Service Tax.
  • Anyone (residents or visitors) purchasing taxable goods or services will pay this tax at retail establishments and on goods ordered within in Polk County. For example, currently when you shop in Altoona, Des Moines, West Des Moines, or Pleasant Hill, you are already paying this tax.

Am I benefitting from LOSST?

  • Not currently. Unless the LOSST is adopted in Bondurant, the City of Bondurant does not receive a distribution from the funds collected in Polk County.
  • LOSST funding is collected within a county and placed in a special distribution fund for that particular county as a whole. Funds are then distributed to communities who have adopted LOSST, on the basis of population and property tax levies. For Bondurant residents, this means that they would receive more back in the distribution amount than they pay in.

As a Bondurant taxpayer, how would I benefit if LOSST is approved in Bondurant?

  • Estimated revenue total for Polk County is $75,274,433.
  • The City Council voted on April 22, 2019, to dedicate 60% of any local option sales and service tax collected for property tax reduction for its residents and 40% for street improvements, other public infrastructure, and capital needs.
  • Each year, for the past thirteen years, the Council has lowered the levy rate by $0.05.
  • This saves the average property owner in Bondurant approximately $216.50 per year.
  • Bondurant’s distribution is estimated to be $865,923.  The revenue largely comes from people who do not live in Bondurant. Conversely, Bondurant residents pay this tax throughout the metropolitan area and the State, but currently, do not receive any return revenue from it.
  • Capital expenditures include streets, the underpass, turn lanes at Grant and 2nd Street, library expansion, parks, and trails, and that are planned or are needed for the community.
  • If the Local Option Sales and Service Tax passes, it is estimated that the City of Bondurant property tax rate, which is $13.73549 per thousand dollars of taxable valuation for FY19, could be lowered by approximately $1.95, triple the amount it has taken the City thirteen years to lower.
  • Additionally, the funds dedicated to street improvements, other public infrastructure, and capital needs would mean that more money would be available for these projects/needs without needing to increase the debt service levy. For information about the City’s capital plan, please visit: http://www.cityofbondurant.com/webres/File/Budget%20Info/4%20CIP.pdf

For voting information, please visit https://www.polkcountyiowa.gov/auditor/election  or call Polk County Elections office at 515.286.3247.