RITZVILLE - A proposed tax measure that would improve the criminal justice system in Adams County is passing but barely. The Proposition 1 sales and use tax is passing with 51.59 of the vote.
The measure would increase the sales tax in Adams County by .003 percent. Adams County Sheriff Dale Wagner, a proponent of the new tax, says the money generated would be spent on improvements to the county court, the county jail, the sheriff’s office and police departments within the county. Wagner says all the police departments in the county support the new tax.
County officials say the new tax would generate an estimated $500,000 to $750,000 per year. Adams County officials say 60 percent of the revenue generated from the sales and use tax will be retained by Adams County and 40 percent will be distributed on a per capita basis to cities within Adams County. Wagner says needed expenditures within the sheriff’s office include three new deputies and three new jail staff positions.
If approved, the new tax would take effect on Jan. 1, 2019 and would not sunset.