Ballots sent out for Tonganoxie sales tax question

A ballot drop-off box stands near the Leavenworth County Courthouse on the south side. A similar box is at the Leavenworth County Annex in Tonganoxie. Tonganoxie voters can drop off their ballots at the annex, which County Clerk Janet Klasinski said actually would save the city of Tonganoxie on postal charges. Ballots are due back to the county at noon Feb. 28. Enlarge photo

February 8, 2017

Ballots should start popping up in Tonganoxie mailboxes for the Tonganoxie's 3/4-cent sales tax replacement vote,

Informational meetings have taken place, but The Mirror continues to offer information about the mail-in election, including a story from Tuesday’s second and final informational meeting, which took place after The Mirror’s deadline Tuesday evening in Tonganoxie City Council Chambers.

Tonganoxie’s current 3/4-cent sales tax was approved in 2007 to help pay for Tonganoxie Water Park.

This sales tax will expire on Sept. 30, 2017, as the water park debt will be paid in full.

The proposed replacement 3/4-cent sales tax would last 20 years if passed (Oct. 1, 2017-Sept. 30, 2037).

The ballot question earmarks the tax going toward construction of new capital improvements, maintaining new and current infrastructure, funding debt issued for capital improvements and the construction of a new or expanded library. The tax would be in addition to a 1 percent citywide retailers’ sales tax already levied within the city.

Revenue from the 20-year replacement sales tax is estimated at $7.2 million.Library representatives are projecting a new library would at most cost $3.6 million. Library officials have been searching for potential sites for a new library. There was discussion of a new library being built at Third and Main streets, but the latest potential site would be on the southwest corner of the former Tonganoxie Elementary School property.

A group of Tonganoxie residents are looking to purchase the property.

Ballots have been or are in the process of being mailed out. They’re due back at the courthouse by noon Feb. 28.

County Clerk Janet Klasinski said the county currently will be mailing out 2,885 ballots to active voters.

Klasinski estimates that the election will cost Tonganoxie about $9,500.

Here are some notable reminders about the election from the Leavenworth County Election Office:

All active registered voters will be mailed a ballot to the address on your voter registration record.

• Families with multiple ballots should send the ballots back with the accompanying envelope, which includes a required signature. Envelopes with multiple ballots will not be counted.

• Voters can drop off ballots at the ballot drop-off outside the Leavenworth County Annex, 725 Laming, in Tonganoxie. Klasinski said that can help keep election costs down because there won’t be any postage costs there. Ballots also can be dropped off at courthouse.

• Feb. 24 is the last day to mail replacement ballots. Klasinski said voters who have not received ballots by Monday or Tuesday should contact her at 913-684-0421 to determine why they haven't received ballots yet.

• Noon Feb. 28 is the mail-in ballot deadline.

Ballots must be returned by noon that day to be counted.

• County Commission members will canvass votes March 6.

• Deadline to request recount of election is 5 p.m. March 10.

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