By Jack King: CNJ Staff Reporter
Most people in a man-on-the-street poll Wednesday said they support the city of Clovis’ 1/4 of 1 percent gross receipts tax increase, which goes into effect today.
The tax increase, approved by voters March 2, will fund infrastructure improvements and capital outlay purchases like fire and police equipment, city officials have said.
At 25 cents per $100, it will raise total city gross receipts taxes to $6.63 per $100 of goods or services purchased.
Clovis/Curry County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ernie Kos said the city tax increase is necessary.
“Clovis is currently experiencing growth and with the one quarter percent gross receipts tax increase we should be able to respond to the needs created by that growth,” she said.
Paul Tankersley, co-owner of Tankersley’s clothing store on Main Street, agreed with Kos.
“We have to keep up with growth,” he said. “We have many areas of need and this is the fairest way to address those needs.”
Randy Dayhoff, owner of Randy’s Shoes on Main Street, emphasized the fairness of a gross receipts tax.
“This is better than penalizing the people who own property,” he said. “Everybody uses the streets, even people from out of town.”
Even out-of-town shopper Phyllis Ivy, of Roy, agreed with Tankersley and Dayhoff.
“We live in a small, rural community in the northeastern corner of the state. Taxes are higher in Texas and Colorado. I have more trouble with the government taking more of my income tax than I do paying a tax everyone else has to pay,” Ivy said.
Sarah Doerr and Jordan Harrison, both of Portales, said they also have no problem with Clovis’ gross receipts tax increase.
“I think it’s a good thing. The streets have too many pot holes and police and fire departments can always use more money,” Doerr said.
Harrison added: “Twenty-five cents out of $100 is not that much and it’s for a good cause.”
But Scott Mackey of Clovis said he resents any tax.
“We don’t need any more. We have enough as it is,” he said.
Albertson’s food and drug store manager Bill Bargman and Wal-Mart assistant manager Kevin Jefferson both said they had no comment on the new tax increase, but Mackey laughed at the question and added, “We’re ready for it.”