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NWA editorial: For Centerton, sales tax makes sense

Centerton residents have a decision to make at the polls today, but it seems a favorable vote will set the best tone for this growing Benton County town's future.

In a way, Centerton voters will really decide in an election today whether to keep their sales tax situation exactly as it has been for the last decade, and actually before that. In 2006, voters approved a continuation of a city sales tax to bolster the city's fire protection and deliver $6 million in street improvements.

Back then, nearly 80 percent of the voters favored the projects and continuation of the sales tax, but perhaps the most telling figures for consideration today are the number of votes cast back in 2006. Just 255 people cast ballots. Only 1,943 voters were registered in Centerton at the time.

Flash forward to 2017: Centerton has about 7,600 registered voters.

A town growing like that has to continue investing in its infrastructure.

This time around, city leaders hope voters will approve $31 million in bonds to pay for road improvements ($15 million), additional park development ($4 million), infrastructure projects ($4.5 million), including a new city hall that can handle the needs of a growing municipality, and $1 million each for police and fire needs.

Nobody loves taxation, but it's a necessary source of money helping communities be what their residents want them to be. Centerton residents have an opportunity today to maintain a needed level of investment that will directly affect the quality of their lives.

Commentary on 09/12/2017

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