Arab mayor proposes tax hike for road improvements - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Arab mayor proposes tax hike for road improvements

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Mayor Bob Joslin estimates it would cost more than $5-million to repave all of the city's roads. Mayor Bob Joslin estimates it would cost more than $5-million to repave all of the city's roads.
ARAB, AL (WAFF) -

The city of Arab is putting half a million dollars toward repaving approximately eight miles of roads in the city, but you may have to pay the rest.

Mayor Bob Joslin is proposing a plan to increase the city's sales tax by one cent to make up the difference.

It is not always easy to get support for a tax hike, but the mayor feels that if the money is earmarked to only go to roads and capital projects, it has a better chance of passing.

If it does pass, the mayor said the town should never have to ever worry about money for roads in the future.

Joslin estimates it would cost more than $5-million to repave all of the city's roads. That could be reached every five years with a one cent sales tax.

Joslin said because roads last five to eight years, the process would start over.

While opposition is certain, one area merchant feels it could be seen as an investment to keep shoppers coming.

"Got two choices: We could either cut back on services and decrease the services, or we can put a one cent sales tax out there to pick up that slack and set it aside where we'll never have a road problem in the future," said Joslin.

"I think that once we start the paving, I think people are really going to see the difference it is going to make for our city.  And it's just going to make a difference for a lot of people - for our businesses as a whole and as a community," said Downtown Association President Kathy Ramsey.

Joslin said they are looking to hear from the public about what they think.

Meanwhile, he expects work to begin on the first eight miles of roadway in the next 30 days.

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