|Several local issues are on the ballot for voters in Barry and Lawrence counties on Nov. 3.|
Two cities have issues relating to sales taxes on the ballot.
Purdy voters will decide two half-cent sales tax issues that would replace one of the city's current two one-cent general revenue sales taxes. The half-cent taxes would be earmarked for transportation and capital improvements.
In August, the Purdy City Council decided to seek voter approval to revise one of its sales taxes in response to questions raised by attorney Tom Burcham, of Farmington. Burcham filed suit against the city claiming that two taxes for the same purpose are illegal. A hearing is pending before Circuit Judge Robert Wiley.
A majority vote will be required to approve the two half-cent sale tax issues and replace the one-cent general revenue sales tax. If voters defeat both issues, the city's current tax will remain unchanged.
|In Lawrence County, the city of Aurora is going back to voters for reauthorization of its half-cent sales tax for street maintenance. Unlike other bi-county municipalities, Aurora must go back to voters every five years to reauthorize the sales tax.|
According to Rick Batson, Aurora city manager, voters originally approved the sales tax for streets in lieu of a personal property tax. If the sales tax initiative fails, the personal property tax would be reimposed.
Batson said this time voters are asked to reauthorize the street tax so the personal property tax cannot come back. Future requests to continue the sales tax would not be necessary.
A simple majority is needed for passage. Taxes will not change if the proposal passes.
Two school districts, overlapping Barry and Lawrence counties, have bond issues for voters to consider.
Voters who live within the boundaries of the Verona R-7 School District will decide a $500,000 no-tax increase bond issue that would finance the demolition of the district's old high school and the construction and equipping of new locker rooms and physical conditioning facilities.
The bond issue will also be used to complete disability improvements to the district's existing school facilities in order to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements and other facility improvement projects.
If approved, the Verona School District's debt service levy will remain at 83 cents.
Pierce City R-6 School District patrons will decide a $3.9 million bond issue that would finance site development, construction and equipping of a new middle school and vocational agricultural building.
If approved the issue would raise the district's debt service property tax levy from 66 cents to 99 cents.
Absentee voting for the Nov. 3 election will continue at the office of the county clerk. In Barry County, the office is located in the Barry County Courthouse in Cassville. In Lawrence County, the clerk's office is in the Lawrence County Courthouse in Mt. Vernon. Absentee ballots can be cast through Monday, Nov. 2. Voting hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in both counties.
Residents unable to vote in person may request a ballot be mailed to them. Written requests should be sent in Barry County to Gary Youngblood, County Clerk, 700 Main St., Suite 2, Cassville, MO 65625 or faxed to 417-847-5311. In Lawrence County, requests should go to Gary Emerson, County Clerk, 1 Courthouse Square, Suite 101, Mt. Vernon MO 65712 or faxed to 417-466-4348.
Requests should include: the date of the election; the voter's name; physical address; mailing address; phone number and date of birth; the last four digits of the voter's Social Security number; the reason for voting absentee; and the voter's signature. The last day to request an absentee ballot by mail is Wednesday, Oct. 28.
Absentee ballots can be cast on Oct. 31, the Saturday before the election from 9 a.m. to noon at the Barry County Courthouse, and from 8 a.m. to noon at the Lawrence County Courthouse
For more information, call Youngblood at 417-847-2762 or 847-2561 or Emerson at 417-466-2638.