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Jonesboro studies future of public-safety tax

By The Associated Press

This article was published February 18, 2014 at 7:36 a.m.

JONESBORO — Leaders in Jonesboro are discussing whether the city's half-cent sales tax funding public safety should be renewed after it expires at the end of the year.

The 4-year-old tax was initially intended to prevent layoffs in the police and fire departments during the economic downturn. Mayor Harold Perrin said he plans to meet with various groups to discuss whether the tax should be extended.

The tax brings in about $7.3 million per year, on average. Perrin said the temporary tax revenue has allowed the city to stabilize its reserve funds and balance its budget after several years of deficits.

Perrin told The Jonesboro Sun that he may ask voters for more flexibility in how the city can spend its permanent 1 percent sales tax instead.

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