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Franklin Leaders Ask Residents To Renew Tax, To Pay For ATRIP

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RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Franklin County leaders have looked at most every option to pay for matching funds needed to rebuild bridges and pave roads under the governor’s Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation Improvement Program initiative.

County commissioners are hoping to cover those money needs by the citizens approving the renewal of a tax in June.

He’s crunched the numbers backwards and forwards, and so far Franklin County Commission Chairman Barry Moore has only been able to come up with one answer to their $2,500,000 ATRIP funding needs.

“We have talked to the school systems and we asked them if we could get 25% of that one cent sales tax that gets voted on in 2014,” explained Moore.

In 2010, residents approved a 1 cent sales tax increase to help struggling school systems in the county.

In 2014, the financial woes have stabilized and the county commission hopes $500,000 of the money collected by the tax each year can go towards infrastructure improvements.

“This is a positive thing because it’s going to help the school systems and it’ll help the citizens of the county,” Moore said. “So, it’s a win, win for everybody in the county.”

According to Moore, the improvements will allow school buses on roads that are unavailable to them now.

And he wants to remind people the vote on June 3rd is not for a new tax.

“This is not a new sales tax,” stated Moore. “It’s just a continuation of the one cent sales tax and we are going to take the 25% to match only the ATRIP matching part.”

Moore said if the tax vote is shot down, they will simply have to start over with funding ideas.

Re-purposing of the sales tax money must be approved by both the State House and Senate before it can be put on the June ballot.

The proposed legislation has been approved by a House sub-committee.

The current tax rate in Franklin County is 9-percent.