Skip to content

Farmington won’t seek use tax

The Farmington City Council made quick work through a light agenda during regular session on Monday.

Among the items discussed during the meeting was the decision by the Administrative Services committee for the city to not place a “use tax” proposal on the ballot for the collection of internet sales tax.

In Missouri, state legislation was passed in 2016 allowing the state to collect state sales tax on merchandise sold on the internet. Individual cities, however, are required to put the issue before voters to collect the sales tax on internet purchases.

Ward II Councilman John Crouch, who heads up the committee, explained reasons the committee decided against placing the matter on the ballot.

“We concluded we did not want to pursue the use tax,” he said. “There is not a strong demand or need for the tax in the city at the present time. We ask our tax payers for their help when there’s a strong need, but that strong need does not exist — so we are not going to do it.

“Secondly, on use tax, they are very difficult to enforce … and, thirdly, I think it’s a problem that’s going to take care of itself because it’s designed to capture internet sales that are not paying tax (in the state). But, I think as we see Amazon having a physical presence in Missouri … then they’re legally obligated to collect a sales tax in Missouri.”

The city currently has three sales taxes approved by voters that have been in place for a number of years, with one up for renewal in the next four years.

“There is a limit to how much you need to go back to the voters, so to speak, and ask them to reauthorize things,” City Administrator Greg Beavers said after the meeting. “We just felt, collectively, it was best not to pursue the tax at this time.”

The announcement of a public meeting regarding the J-turn intersection was made during the meeting. Officials with MoDOT will be available for a question and answer session beginning at 6 p.m. on Feb. 27 at the Farmington Public Library regarding the change being made this year at the intersection of U.S. Highway 67 and Perrine Road.

“We should have the plans for the J-turn completed at that point in time,” Beavers said. “The purpose of this meeting is to show the J-turn design to folks that have questions on its functionality and how it will work and answer any questions they have in regard to that.”

Beavers said this process is a little different, in that often times public comment on the design is gathered.

“We had very limited options on how to correct this interchange,” he said. “But, we do want folks to at least have an opportunity to come out and understand the reasoning for doing this — which is all about making that intersection safer — and then understanding how it will function before they have to navigate it.”

The council was also updated on the work on Hillsboro Road. Traffic is now detoured from the southern end of Hillsboro Road on to Washington Street and Robbie Lane.

Crews with Bloomsdale Excavating Company are working on a new sewer trunk line. Initially, access to Hillsboro Road from Pine Street will be closed as well. Once the contractors are north of Pine Street — which is anticipated to be by Jan. 25 — motorists will be allowed to make a right-hand turn from Pine Street onto Hillsboro Road.

The work will continue up Hillsboro Road and should be past Robbie Lane by Feb. 23. While crews work along Hillsboro to Robbie Lane, the detour area will be changed to Summit Drive and North Westwood Drive. The press release states the schedule for that change is not known at this time.

The time frame is subject to change depending on the weather and rock excavation.

Excavation work is taking place on the eastern portion of the road, with the resident traffic on the west lanes.

At the conclusion of work each evening, the contractors will do their best to make sure those on the east side of the road have access. Those allowed to drive in the area are asked to use caution and be patient during this time.

In council action, a resolution was approved for Parks and Recreation Director Chris Conway to submit an application to the U.S. National Park Service Land and Water Conservation Fund for the purpose of constructing an outdoor amphitheater in Engler Park.

Beavers explained the grant would help offset some of the cost for such a project. This is not the first time the city has applied for the grant. It was used to build a sports complex in the past, as well as other enhancements for the city.

In administrative services, the council approved a second reading and council action on an ordinance for a final record plat for property located at 120 Holly Tree Lane as well as an ordinance for the designation as an historic property for 102 W. Columbia St.

A first and second reading and council action was approved for an ordinance approving and accepting the dedication of an easement from MCP-Farmington for sewer utilities.

The council next meets in regular session on Feb. 8.

Farmington City Administrator Greg Beavers, far right, tells the council of a public information session on the J-turn intersection scheduled for Feb. 27. Also pictured are (from left) Mayor Larry Forsythe, Ward IV Councilwoman Vanessa Pegram, Ward III Councilman Wayne Linnenbringer and Ward II Councilman John Crouch as well as City Clerk Paula Cartee.

Farmington City Administrator Greg Beavers, far right, tells the council of a public information session on the J-turn intersection scheduled for Feb. 27. Also pictured are (from left) Mayor Larry Forsythe, Ward IV Councilwoman Vanessa Pegram, Ward III Councilman Wayne Linnenbringer and Ward II Councilman John Crouch as well as City Clerk Paula Cartee.

Shawnna Robinson is the managing editor of the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-518-3628 or srobinson@farmingtonpressonline.com

Leave a Comment