The Norman Transcript

Local news

November 25, 2013

Norman City Council members consider renewing half-cent Public Safety Sales Tax

NORMAN — City council members discussed renewing the half-cent Public Safety Sales Tax during a scheduled city council retreat Monday.

Nothing has been decided yet, but members discussed whether the renewal would include another temporary tax and how long that would be in effect, or a permanent tax.

Whatever is decided, it is evident money will be needed in future fiscal years to fulfill public safety needs in the community.

The current sales tax was set up to pay for the salary of 71 people, including 41 police officers and 30 firefighters. There are currently 69 on the payroll, and police officers will be added to that before the sales tax ends in September 2015.

If the sales tax isn’t renewed by September, or three months before that, it could affect 71 people, said Anthony Francisco, city finance director.

Temporary sales tax renewal: Mayor Cindy Rosenthal said she was in favor of renewing the half-cent sales tax for another seven-year period because it has already been proven to be successful. Rosenthal said the city has proven to voters the formula works, so why fix something that isn’t broken?

Rosenthal said she thinks they should put together a specific plan on what they would use the money for, so voters will know what their money would go toward if the renewal passed.

The plan would include continuing to pay for those 71 salaries, adding more police officers and firefighters and outlining what their specific duties would be, as well as outlining each of the departments’ specific capital needs.

City council members Lynne Miller and Stephen Holman agreed.

Permanent sales tax: Council member Robert Castleberry said he would prefer a permanent tax because they are putting permanent employees on a temporary tax.

Castleberry also suggested they should consider a permanent quarter-cent tax for those salaries and a temporary quarter-cent tax for capital needs so they aren’t leaving people out to dry.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local news
  • N7 Sooners come together to serve Native American youth

    Whitney Wofford has faced some tough competition as a part of the Oklahoma tennis team. However, on Wednesday, Wofford may have taken on her biggest and most rewarding competition yet at the Sooners For N7 event at the Oklahoma football ...

    April 10, 2014 3 Photos

  • Chamber Banquet During annual banquet, Chamber of Commerce promotes moving Norman forward

    Amidst the backdrop of music, dancing, dinner and fellowship, business leader Mike Fowler announced that the time for a quality-of-life initiative in Norman has come. As incoming Norman Chamber of Commerce board chairman, Fowler and ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Symposium speaker Paul Polik: Commerce can help and bring millions out of poverty

    How to harness the power of commerce to address social and environmental challenges in sustainable ways was the topic of discussion at the University of Oklahoma Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth’s fourth annual Social ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Amber waves turn gray as farms lose younger generation

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Jerry Pfeiffer was thrilled when his son, Kelsey, 25, announced plans to return to the family’s farm in Orlando....

    April 18, 2014

  • Postal retiree luncheon set

    A postal retiree luncheon will be 11:30 a.m. Monday at Golden Corral Buffet and Grill, 123 N. Interstate Drive in Norman. Diners will meet in the lobby. For more information, call Joyce Carle at 872-5157....

    April 18, 2014

  • Flapjack fundraiser set

    The Apple Gold Group, a franchisee of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar, will partner with the Global Outreach Team at Go Church to host a Flapjack Fundraiser on April 26. Proceeds raised will be used by team members to purchase ...

    April 18, 2014

  • OU Hornsemble goes to the movies

    The OU Hornsemble will present a concert of music from the cinema at 6 p.m. April 27 in the Paul F. Sharp Concert Hall. Billed as “Movie-Time Music,” the ensemble will present a wide variety of cinematic music from the 1940s to the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Woman bound over for trial

    A Slaughterville woman facing a manslaughter charge after the death of an 8-year-old child was bound over for trial this week after a preliminary hearing in Cleveland County District Court. Kimberly Dawn Wenthold, 29, was charged in ...

    April 18, 2014

  • MNTC campaign focuses on dangers of texting while driving

    Students enrolled in Moore Norman Technology Center’s Career Exploration Education class are taking a class project that they feel strongly about to an involved level within their community. They are raising awareness among their high ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Fighting to rid world of polio

    A small crutch leaned against a podium inside an Oklahoma Memorial Union room Wednesday evening. It was a prop, retrieved and held aloft by Shawn Arnold as he described his early battle with polio....

    April 18, 2014