Paso Robles council gives initial support for sales tax measure

The Paso Robles City Council voted unanimously Thursday night to prepare to place a 1 percent sales tax increase measure on the Nov. 2020 ballot.

Paso Robles already has a .5 percent city sales tax. Voters approved the prior sales tax measure in 2012, and it is set to expire in 2024.

City officials say a new 1 percent sales tax increase would generate up to $10 million annually. Officials are projecting a revenue loss of more than $5 million each in 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, because of the coronavirus, according to a city staff report.

On Thursday, council members voted 5-0 to direct city staff to return to the council at its July 21 meeting with a resolution and analysis for placing a sales tax measure on the November ballot. Council members would then decide whether to formally place the measure on the ballot.

Additionally, the council also voted 5-0 Thursday in favor of staff preparing a 1 percent transient occupancy tax increase measure to place on the Nov. ballot. City staff will present the TOT measure, too, at the July 21 council meeting.