NewsElection 2022


Arroyo Grande residents voting on 1% sales tax hike to fix streets and sidewalks

Posted at 9:07 PM, Nov 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-04 15:40:04-04

People who live in Arroyo Grande will decide whether to raise the city’s sales tax this November.

Measure D-22 would raise Arroyo Grande’s sales tax by 1% to help pay for street, sidewalk and storm drain repairs.

From rough roads to cracked sidewalks, city streets are in growing need of attention.

“In general, I think it’s acceptable but there are some areas that are definitely in need of improvement,” said Arroyo Grande resident David Williams, who says that there are some problem spots in need of repaving.

“Lower Halcyon, Oak Park has improved but there’s still some work that needs to be done.”

City officials say there is a growing budget shortfall as an increasing number of roads fall into poor condition.

“The last few years, things have been looking progressively worse,” said Arroyo Grande City Manager Whitney McDonald, who adds that the city needs $6.25 million a year just to maintain current road conditions.

Right now, the city is only able to spend $1.25 million a year on infrastructure like roads and sidewalks.

“This measure and the revenue from this measure will really bridge that gap for us and enable us to get a handle on our street repair needs,” said McDonald.

Measure D-22 would raise the city’s sales tax from 7.75% to 8.75% and generate around $5.6 million a year.

“All the funding will stay in Arroyo Grande; it will not go outside of the community. It will be reinvested directly in the community, on the streets, on the infrastructure and on all of the facilities that we need and use every day,” explained McDonald.

The one percent sales tax hike means customers will pay an extra cent per dollar at restaurants, bars, gas stations and retail stores.

“We understand the concerns about timing and seeing what’s going on with the economy and inflation. It’s a difficult ask to make of people-- It was not taken lightly.”

the city says it will reevaluate the sales tax every five years to see if it’s still needed.

The new sales tax would take effect on April 1 if voters approve the measure.