Mesa may add to $400M bond project - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Mesa may add to $400M bond project

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Posted: Wednesday, December 12, 2007 11:26 pm | Updated: 6:24 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

The Mesa City Council is considering adding more projects to a bond program already topping $400 million.

If approved in the November election, the bonds would be funded by the first property tax the city has seen since 1945.

The council will discuss the issue at today’s study session, and is slated to call the election at Monday’s regular meeting.

Talk of bond projects comes at a time when the city is seeing decreases in sales tax revenue, which makes up about one-fourth of the city’s budget.

Property taxes would help alleviate some of the strain on the budget.

The bond program currently has two questions: $230.5 million for streets and $172.4 million for public safety.

Today, the council will discuss the addition of street light projects to the first question, and one more fire station and $500,000 for cardiac monitoring equipment to the public safety question.

The street light plan would mean doling out about $2.5 million annually for five years to install 300 to 350 light poles.

The fire station would cost $5.7 million to build at 104th Street and Broadway Road and cost $1.7 million to operate annually.

The projects would mean a total of $420.7 million in bond programs.

The bonds would be funded with a secondary property tax, which can only be used for bond projects and last as long as the debt survives.

But the tax could be around for some time, said budget director Chuck Odom.

“Bond debt can last up to 20 years,” he said.

This would be the first time in 62 years Mesa residents would pay a property tax, since city officials set the tax to zero in the 1940s.

The estimated cost to a homeowner with a $100,000 property would be $30.94 per year, and $77.35 for a $250,000 home, according to deputy city manager Bryan Raines.

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