Sales tax to fund road work in city

In Friendswood by Reporter NewsLeave a Comment

By Nicole Jones

More road work on city streets will begin soon, courtesy of the street sales tax, city officials say.

City Council on Dec. 2 approved $4 million in road work and resurfacing for selected city streets selected through a pavement assessment.

“If folks are upset with the construction going on they will be even more upset in the next few months,” City Manager Morad Kabiri commented at the council meeting. “These are done with money coming out of the street sales tax initiative that was approved a few years back.”

“We need citizens to be aware that all this work is being paid for out of sales tax money,” Mayor Mike Foreman said. “That tax sunsets, and we have to put it on the ballot next year.”

The sales tax election will take place in either May or November of next year, he said.

The 3/8 cent sales tax approved by voters in 2016 designated the funding to repair and maintain infrastructure in the city. In that same election, voters designated an additional one-eighth cent to go toward economic development in the downtown district. This increased the city’s total sales tax from 7.75 percent to the state cap of 8.25 percent. A lawsuit challenging the validity of that election was dismissed in 2018.

Roads scheduled for repair are largely guided by a pavement assessment done in 2017. Roads that will be addressed in the upcoming project have not yet been announced but have been designated as the highest priority, city staff said.

“This is a project that’s exciting for everybody in Friendswood,” Councilman Robert Griffon said.

“People are seeing it, and they know it’s important.”

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