OPINION - March 22, 2023
“Tremonton is growing incredibly fast, just as planned by our Tremonton City leadership. According to the city, we’ve grown from a population of 8,638 to 11,593 – a massive 34% increase from 2019 to 2022. And they’re planning for us to grow to 15,000-20,000 in the next 4-5 years! I’m not sure why, other than a few of them are becoming rich by this. Some residents may want it too, but a lot of us don’t.
Along with this massive change in culture and traffic, comes another thing. Can you hear it? It’s the wave of big tax increases. Our city trash and recycling bills went up 30-37% recently. The property taxes went up in 2022 tremendously, and they’ll go up again if the city leadership has its wishes. Forget the big inflation that has hit us all hard. The city leadership wants more.
So, let’s review a few of the things that the city leadership wants. They’re proposing a 7.2% pay raise for the city staff this year (it was 5% last year). They’re also proposing to increase the size of the city staff by 17.5 new positions over the next 4-5 years. Combined, this is millions of dollars. Five of the new staff would be additional police officers. The city leadership says we need them because we’re not up to the average number of officers per population. They didn’t discuss whether there’s a crime problem or not. They just want to reach an average or go higher.
The city staff does their best to increase our taxes by constantly giving the city council their estimates on new costs but failing to give current revenue numbers and expected gains in revenue. Sales and property tax are way up this year, again! Painting a dark picture encourages the need to increase taxes. One impressive council member called the staff out on that at the recent meeting.
Another increase a city leader mentioned recently was the need to increase the capacity of our water treatment plant, which would cost tens of millions of dollars. And at this council meeting, they mentioned an upcoming Truth-in-Taxation meeting on August 15, 2023, following their plan to adopt a property tax increase on June 20. The public needs to be at these meetings to share their thoughts on additional tax increases.
So, listen close, it’s coming – the tsunami of a booming population and tax increases.”
Tremonton, Utah resident