The Barry County E-911 Emergency Services Board will host informational meetings throughout the county over the next few weeks. Community members are invited to attend the meetings to learn more about the one-eighth of a cent sales tax issue that will be decided by voters on Nov. 8.
"Barry County E-911 is proposing this tax to keep from further cutting emergency services and limiting the current services you expect as standard," said Mike Phillips, Barry County E-911 executive director. "Please attend a meeting to hear of the financial challenges the 911 Center is under, and the impact this vote means for the citizens and your 911 system."
The first meeting will be held at the Eagle Rock Fire Station at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 25. The board will hold a second meeting at the Wheaton Fire Station at 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 28.
Three other meetings have been scheduled for the first two weeks in November. They will be held at the Seligman City Hall on Tuesday, Nov. 1, the Central Crossing Fire Station in Shell Knob on Thursday, Nov. 3 and the Barry County Museum in Cassville on Monday, Nov. 7. All meetings will be held at 6 p.m.
On Aug. 16, the Barry County E-911 Board voted to place the one-eighth of a cent sales tax on the upcoming ballot. Currently, Barry County E-911 operates on a quarter cent sales tax.
Last year, the E-911 Board's existing one-quarter of a cent sales tax generated $885,544 in sales tax revenue, which was considerably less than what the tax was generating prior to the recession, said Board President Jon Horner.
An additional one-eighth of a cent is projected to produce $425,000 to $450,000 a year, which would give the board an annual budget of around $1.3 million to operate the Barry County E-911 Center if voters approve the upcoming ballot issue.
All community members are invited to attend the upcoming informational meetings.