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Council eyes guest tax increase

Staff writer

Hillsboro City Council instructed City Administrator Larry Paine to prepare an ordinance that would increase the city’s transient bed tax from 3 percent to 5 percent Tuesday.

Hillsboro Convention and Visitors Bureau Chairman Gita Noble requested an increase to 6 percent, which would increase the bureau’s budget by about $5,000 annually.

Mayor Delores Dalke said the city’s tax supersedes the county’s 6 percent tax, rather than being in addition to it. She said she checked tax rates in other area cities, and many were 5 percent, including Herington and Hesston. She recommended the increase to 5 percent.

Administrator evaluation postponed

The council met in closed session for 10 minutes for Paine’s evaluation, then extended the closed session another 10 minutes. Upon return to open session, council member Byron McCarty requested that the council postpone giving the results to Paine until the April 19 meeting, to allow Dalke to tabulate the scores.

In other business:

  • Paine told the council that arrangements to open Hillsboro Family Aquatic Center for the summer are on schedule, in response to a question from Watson.
  • There were no comments at a public hearing regarding the city’s tax increment finance district, and the council approved a related ordinance. The council had previously had a hearing for the same purpose before an error in the legal description of the district was discovered and corrected.
  • An ordinance changing the city’s liquor license fee from $250 per year to $500 every two years was approved. The change matches a change in state liquor licensing, which changed licenses from one to two years.
  • The American Legion’s liquor license renewal was approved for two years.
  • An ordinance designating streets within the city limits as main trafficways including Adams Street between U.S. 56 and First Street, First Street between Adams and Ash streets, Industrial Road between U.S. 56 and the railroad right of way, A Street between Main and Washington streets, Eisenhower Street between C and A streets, A Street between Eisenhower and Jefferson streets, Third Street between Ash and Adams streets, and Commerce Street between Industrial Road and Santa Fe Street, and D Street. The designation simplifies issuing bonds for repairs on those streets and applying for grants for Kansas Department of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School program.
  • The city’s website is being updated. An in-progress version of the new layout can be seen at http://www.cityofhillsboro.net/test.

The next council meeting will be 4 p.m. April 19.

Last modified April 7, 2011

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