Sausalito has approved a ballot measure in November that would increase the city’s sales tax by 1%, a move that would give the town a 9% sales tax rate and is designed so that both “residents and visitors” would share the burden of the tax, City Manager Chris Zapata told the Marin Independent Journal.
If approved by voters – it was identified as a general tax and only requires a simple majority to be included on the ballot – the sales tax increase is expected to raise $2.8 million in revenue a year to bolster Sausalito’s budget. If the ballot measure is passed by a majority of Sausalito voters, it will go into effect on April 21, 2023, giving Sausalito a tax rate of 9%.
Mill Valley’s tax rate is 8%, while San Rafael’s is 9%, Novato’s is 8.25%. San Anselmo’s is 8.5%, and that of Corte Madera, Fairfax and Larkspur are each are 8.75%.
The increase is intended to alleviate some of the city’s budget problems. The city’s budget deficit is expected to widen in the coming years due to ongoing pension obligations, debt service on bonds and the increasing costs of managing the camp of homeless people at Marinship Park, according to the IJ.
The city warned the expiration of Measure O would result in the estimated loss of $1.2 million to $1.5 million a year.