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Measure F

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In July 2010, the City Council unanimously voted to place a revenue measure (Measure F) on the November 2010 ballot to maintain vital city services during difficult economic times.  Although the FY 10/11 budget was balanced, the ongoing cost for essential City services was expected to be greater than existing revenues. From FY 07/08 through FY 11/12, the City had cut more than $6.5 million dollars, almost 20 percent of the budget. The City eliminated over 51 staff positions, negotiated salary reductions with all employees, implemented cost savings, and dramatically reduced services. Even with these cuts and reductions, the City still faced a deficit of over $1 million that needed to be solved through a combination of revenue increases and expenditure cuts.  Without additional revenue, the City was not going to be able to continue the current level of services to the community.  The City Council placed the revenue measure on the ballot and gave the voters the choice to tax themselves.

On November 2, 2010, 58% of the voters approved Measure F to provide a temporary 5-year ½ cent sales tax. Below is the ballot language for Measure F.

Measure F – 2010 Fiscal Emergency & Vital City Services Revenue Measure
To offset/prevent additional budget cuts and maintain/restore vital general city services including, and not limited to: neighborhood police patrols, crime prevention programs, 9-1-1 response times; city street/pothole repair; park maintenance; preventing closure or elimination of youth and senior centers/services, shall the City of Novato enact a half-cent sales tax for 5 years, with review by a citizen committee, annual independent audits, and all funds spent locally for the benefit of Novato citizens? (en Español)

Other Sales Tax Information
Measure F is a general purpose tax paid by all consumers purchasing goods and services in the City. Sales tax does not apply to groceries or prescriptions. In terms of vehicles, the sales tax is based on the address of the buyer -- not the location of the dealership. For large purchases that are delivered (such as appliances) and vehicles, the sales tax is determined by the location where the buyer lives – not by the location of the business where the purchase is made.

Novato Citizens Finance Advisory / Oversight Committee

The mission of the Novato Citizens Finance Advisory / Oversight Committee is to provide regular feedback, insight and recommendations and report periodically to the City Council on a variety of financial matters such as financial policies, long-term fiscal sustainability, budget and forecast assumptions, etc. The Committee also shall act as the official Citizens Oversight Committee as required by the Novato transactions and use tax ordinance (Measure F and Measure C).

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