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Library tax hike passes in Kirkwood; use tax fails in Brentwood

The Kirkwood Library will get a complete rehab, thanks to Tuesday's vote.
The Kirkwood Library will get a complete rehab, thanks to Tuesday's vote.

By Tom Weber, KWMU

St. Louis, Mo – An effort to raise property taxes in Kirkwood to pay for renovations and operations at the Kirkwood Library had little trouble passing Tuesday, but voters in Brentwood turned back leaders' efforts to bring back a use tax.

With 100% reporting, Kirkwood's Prop L passed with 56% of the vote. Brentwood's Prop A failed by a 293-160 vote tally.

Also, in St. Ann, a utility tax increase passed and the few dozen voters in Wellston who showed up to vote overwhelmingly approved a higher business license fee for the city.

The Kirkwood plan will see property taxes increased 12 cents to pay to renovate to the Kirkwood Library, and also to raise money to run the library.

The first eight cents will raise about $6.5 million to pay for a complete renovation to the building, which has some sections dating back to 1940. The other four cents will become part of the library's operating revenue and help restore some cuts made a few years ago.

The Kirkwood Library District includes most of the city of Kirkwood, with the notable exception of Meacham Park. People in that neighborhood are part of the St. Louis County Library District.

Brentwood was trying to reinstate a use tax, which is a sales tax on items bought online or mail order.

The city's website notes the city collected the tax for about two years before the Missouri Supreme Court ruled cities need local approval before implementing them. During that time, Brentwood estimates it brought in about $160,000 in use tax revenue.

The vote in St. Ann means utility taxes will increase 9% for commercial customers and 6% for residential property.

Wellston's business license fee will now increase from $125 to $250.

In all four ballot questions, a simple majority was needed for approval.

Local Elections
Nov. 6, 2007

Kirkwood Library District
Shall the District raise property taxes by $0.12 to renovate, improve, operate and maintain the Kirkwood Library?

Choice Votes (%)
Yes 2,289 (56%)
No 1,792 (44%)
City of Brentwood
Shall the city impose a local use tax at the same rate as the local sales tax?
Choice Votes (%)
Yes 160 (35%)
No 293 (65%)
City of St. Ann
Shall the city raise its commercial utility tax to 9% and its residential utility tax to 6%?

Choice Votes (%)
Yes 731 (55%)
No 598 (45%)
City of Wellston
Shall the business and occupational license fee be increased from $125 to $250?

Choice Votes (%)
Yes 38 (63%)
No 22 (37%)


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