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MEASURE A: These Arcata High Seniors — and Their Supporters — Hope Arcata Property Owners Will Pay a Little Bit More to Keep the City’s Parks in the Green | Lost Coast Outpost

MEASURE A: These Arcata High Seniors — and Their Supporters — Hope Arcata Property Owners Will Pay a Little Bit More to Keep the City’s Parks in the Green | Lost Coast Outpost 2020-10-03Leave a comment

electrical bike MEASURE A: These Arcata Excessive Seniors — and Their Supporters — Hope Arcata Property House owners Will Pay a Little Bit Extra to Maintain the Metropolis’s Parks within the Inexperienced | Misplaced Coast Outpost

People Biking on the Humboldt Bay Path within the Arcata Marsh throughout the early days of the pandemic | picture: Andrew Goff

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From biking within the Arcata Marsh to mountain climbing within the Group Forest, having fun with native parks and open areas has continued to be a favourite pastime and, fortunately, one which has been permitted and inspired amid the pandemic.

That’s why Arcata Excessive Faculty seniors Zoie Andre and Vivian Gerstein have lately been dedicating their free time to selling Arcata’s Measure A, which proposes a particular tax to assist fund the preservation, upkeep and enlargement of town’s parks, trails and open areas. As co-captain of the Humboldt Composite Mountain Bike staff and the Arcata Excessive Cross Nation Crew, Gerstein stated that sustaining the areas is essential to her, particularly lately.

“It’s been my escape in all this COVID craziness,” Gerstein instructed the Outpost in a cellphone interview Thursday. “I feel it’s crucial we protect our outside recreation alternatives.”

MEASURE FOR MEASURE

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Measure A — which wants a two-thirds majority to cross — asks Arcata voters to approve a $37 property tax to assist fund the preservation, upkeep and enlargement of town’s parks, trails, forest and agricultural lands. The tax income can be positioned right into a particular fund to be used of actions resembling development of latest trails, acquisition of latest open area property, habitat restoration and upkeep of present park amenities.

As co-chairs of the Friends of Arcata Parks and Open Spaces for Measure A, Andre and Gerstein say that the tax is essential and won’t solely profit Arcata residents by preserving the areas that they get pleasure from, but additionally by sustaining the attraction of the realm to vacationers and people who might need to relocate right here.

“One of many causes folks transfer right here is for outside areas,” Andre — daughter of Marc Andre, head of town’s environmental providers division — instructed the Outpost. “It would assist enhance our financial system by making this a extra fascinating place to reside.”

However the Humboldt County Taxpayers League argues that funding for trails and parks is already supplied by way of timber harvest as part of town’s Forest Management Plan, and says that the small print on how Measure A funds can be spent are imprecise.

President of the league Uri Driscoll says that it’s as much as town to appropriately use the funds it has, reasonably than burden Arcata property house owners with one other tax.

“If these trails, as they maintain saying, are an attraction for vacationers, then it could be extra acceptable to have a gross sales tax,” Driscoll added in a latest cellphone interview with the Outpost.

However proponents of Measure A argue {that a} gross sales tax can be extra regressive than a parcel tax, and would possible have extra of an influence on low-income people. And, though funding for open area preservation is supplied from timber harvest, this tax would assist complement that funding with out “overburdening the forest” by relying closely on timber harvest for funding, Andre stated.

Town does additionally obtain grant funding to protect and keep parks and trails, however typically the grant businesses ask that town have the ability to match the funding, Andre stated. So, if Measure A have been to cross, town would then be eligible for extra grant funding.

Driscoll says that, like with Measure R, it’s an excessive amount of to ask of the taxpayers, particularly when many individuals in the neighborhood have been financially impacted by COVID-19, and after town lately accredited water and sewer price will increase.

The proposed tax additionally has no sundown. So if Measure A have been to cross, it might solely be amended or reversed by the passage of one other poll measure.

However Andre and Gerstein really feel that $37 per parcel yearly is “not outrageously excessive” for the profit it could actually present, including that preserving parks and open areas helps keep the worth of properties within the space,

“Everybody will have the ability to profit from this measure not directly,” Andre stated. 

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