Casper Voters May Take Frustrations Out on One Cent Tax

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Casper -(KCWY) "They see the city and the county not being deserving of extra funds,” said Casper city councilman Keith Goodenough.

November's one cent tax vote could be in jeopardy if city residents decide city council is not focusing on city business and some city council members say frustrations in the community are becoming apparent.

"People have said that voting no on the one cent is the result of discontent of government and government actions, local government actions, so for example if people are irritated with the city manager and don't agree with some of his approaches they can't vote the city manager out because he is not an elected official,” said Goodenough.

Goodenough says they can vote no on the one cent tax.

"A no vote would cause significant, substantial alterations to the operation of the city,” said Casper city manager John Patterson.

"I'd think we see cut backs in most of the recreation venues, the hours they are open and the employees they have. I think we would probably have to there is almost no doubt we'd have to increase sewer and water rates substantially,” said Casper Mayor Paul Meyer.

Patterson says many of these cuts would be seen immediately if a no vote wins out on Election Day, Mayor Meyer thinks the city could run effectively for about a year, but smaller municipalities would take a tremendous hit.

"We do have a fairly substantial; as a matter of fact we have reserves that almost every city in the country would envy to have,” said Meyer.

"I'm nervous in the sense that we want to make sure that we follow the same pattern and same program that we used last year,” said Patterson.

Goodenough is sure that as city council continues to have an issue with the Hedquist situation turmoil in the community will continue to build.

"I believe that comes out when people go and have a choice whether to go raise taxes or not,” said Goodenough.

Goodenough says he thinks voters want to spend one cent money on required projects rather than optional projects, such as Hogadon.

Mayor Meyer and city manager John Patterson both say this tax has changed the city to what it has become over the last forty years and that much of the funds are drawn from visitors to the area.