Gas Tax, TIF Debate, And Sharks…Oh My!

by William Skink

Enough people in our fair community were bamboozled into voting for a gas tax earlier this month. The result is similar to what happens when one is chumming the water: sharks show up.

Now that our elected sharks smell blood in the water, they are circling for more:

Missoula County voters this week approved an additional 2-cent local option fuel tax, though it doesn’t take effect until later this year. City and county officials hope the measure’s passages signals a change of mind among voters who may now be looking for outside revenue to provide relief to local property owners.

“Maybe they’re willing to be creative about other alternatives to property tax,” Slotnick said. “I’m really hoping this opens the gate to have a larger discussion on local option and other things we can do to get our tourism to help pay for some of the infrastructure they enjoy.”

Once again, with all this talk about money and budgets and CREATIVE ALTERNATIVES to the looming financial crisis, not one word in this article mentions the fact the Missoula Redevelopment Agency is sitting on around 35 MILLION dollars of public money.

While the Missoula Current conveniently omits this pool of public money, today at 11:30am City Club Missoula will be hosting a debate on the pros and cons of TIF . Sailor Engen will be making the case for why this slush fund distributed by his hand-picked lackeys is so awesome, and Adam Hertz will try to include all the highly questionable use of public money that has been thrown around this town during the Engen regime.

Go get ’em, Adam!

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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1 Response to Gas Tax, TIF Debate, And Sharks…Oh My!

  1. TC says:

    One last thing – because I said I was out due to the incestuousness of City Gov’t. I listened to the entire City Club conversation regarding TIF. I had 2 take-aways
    1) Anyone that has studied/trained in/practiced interrogation techniques knew exactly when Mayor Engen was either lying or diffusing.
    2) There was a lot of talk about sunset (when the TIF would end in an area and then all that sweet, sweet tax revenue would return to the general fund – thereby providing tax relief). Just for the record – none of the TIFs will “sunset “prior to 2030. And If the MRA decides they want to keep the gravy they can extend indefinitely. Most Missoula residents will not see the benefit of an increased tax base before 2040 at best(20 yrs from now!!!) In the meantime we will be subject to increased property taxes, now a gas tax, and hopefully (according to the County) an local option sales tax.
    But that is just the cost of business to attract Californians, Washingtonians and Texans to relocate to Missoula. We have always been a serf State/City to our betters (with Money) – guess we will remain so

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