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Measure C sales tax receipts soar to $2.9M

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POSTED June 23, 2017 12:38 a.m.

Estimates prior to the 2014 election predicted that Lathrop could end up taking in an extra $2 million annually if voters were to approve a one-cent sales tax increase to bolster public safety and complete projects beneficial to the community as a whole.
But as Lathrop has grown and the economy has gotten stronger, that forecast has proved to be a conservative one with Lathrop expected to take in more than $2.9 million from the tax this past fiscal year and will take in almost $3.26 million next year.
“It’s been very beneficial – the money is being spent on public safety and other city services within the parameters of the measure,” Dhaliwal said. “We’ve done things with our parks like install rubberized surfaces, and we’ve hired more firefighters and more police officers to help keep our residents safe.
“It has put the city in a very good situation financially, and enabled us to provide the services that our citizens want and deserve.”
Conceived as a way to help Lathrop rebound from the massive hole it found itself in following the crash of the housing market, Measure C has helped in replacing positions in public safety that were slashed as either a result of fiscal belt-tightening, or in the case of the Lathrop-Manteca Fire District, reassessed home values that put a significant dent in the district’s operating budget.
Since voters approved it by a margin of more than 70 percent in 2014, Lathrop has hired more than 15 positions including:
Two Community Impact Team deputies to handle drug and gang issues throughout the city.
A detective assigned to Lathrop.
A School Resource Officer.
A total of six firefighter/engineers to replace those that were slashed when the district’s financial footing was rocked by plummeting housing values.
uAlmost 2 full-time Battalion Chief positions for LMFD to help keep up with the administrative duties for the growing district.
In the next fiscal year, Measure C will pay for a senior recreation leader and a full-time office assistant for the first time, while the positons of administrative assistant and facility supervisor will go unfunded out of the sales tax proceeds.
But it’s not just staffing levels that have benefited from the proceeds.
Since the implementation of Measure C, that money has gone to pay for a rubberized play surface at Crescent Park and a traffic signal at Harlan Road and Stonebridge Drive. Plans are in place to renovate the turf at River Park South as well as build a new shade structure at Mossdale Park.
Of the nearly $3 million that is expected to be taken in over the course of the next fiscal year, 40 percent of that will go towards maintaining staffing levels at LMFD, while the remaining 60 percent will go towards various city projects as well as positions within Lathrop Police Services and other city departments that serve the objectives laid out in the language of the tax.

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email jcampbell@mantecabulletin.com or call 209.249.3544.

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