Mission City Council Passes ‘driveway’ tax

Excerts from the article from By BRAD COOPER of the Kansas City Star

The Mission City Council just approved the so-called “driveway tax” to pay for roads.

The council voted 7-1 to begin a tax based on how much traffic properties produce instead of depending as much on property and sales taxes.

The fee, which starts in December, will run $72 a year for single-family homes. Larger businesses that generate lots of traffic, like Mission Bank, could pay $5,659 a year. A drive-thru fast food restaurant could pay $12,200 a year. Target could pay $64,750 yearly.

Commercial Properties will be charged more than residential homes, which don’t generate as much traffic.

The fee also affects tax exempt organizations like churches, schools and government buildings.

Statistics show that a single-family home generates about 91/2 vehicle trips a day. A Target store, generates nearly 8,500 trips a day. McDonald’s is predicted to produce 2,700 trips a day.

The fee is expected to raise $1.2 million a year with the proceeds going to a $38 million plan to improve the city’s roads during the next 10 years. It also will help fund a new express bus service between Overland Park and the Country Club Plaza that will run through Mission.

The fee was part of the city’s $23.1 million budget that the City Council approved.

City officials say they need the money for deteriorating streets. Some residents said poor economic times make it bad for what’s essentially a tax increase.

Mayor Laura McConwell and city council members said they are besieged with complaints about the condition of city roads. Delaying work on the roads will just increase the cost in the future, McConwell said.

“It’s something we have to do to save money for our families in the long run,” the mayor said.

Many people believe this type of tax unfairly taxes businesses, and non-profits.

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