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Locals react to car tab fee increase

Locals react to car tab fee increase

YAKIMA, Wash. - City council voted four to two in favor of increasing car tab fees by $20.

This issue was voted down by members twice before, but brought back to be considered for the 2018 budget.

Councilwoman Dulce Gutierrez said she is frustrated that this is one of the city's only options for funding.

"It does leave our options very limited in terms of how to generate funding," she said. "Unfortunately a regressive tax like this is often times the only option we'll have left."

But some disagree. One woman spoke at the city council meeting last night and said there are a lot of low income people living in Yakima who can't afford the extra $20.

Thomas Lydall agreed and said the city should stop wasting money.

"What are they doing with all the other tax money that they're supposed to have for that," he said. "They're not using it for that, they need to."

However, others like Nancy Chott think the money could go toward making our city nicer.

"I believe that I don't want to pay more money but if it helps the city and helps the streets and I'm sure we need some repairs, then I would be for it," she said.

City council said the additional fee could raise over $1 million that would strictly be used for roads and sidewalks.

"A lot of the neighborhoods that need infrastructure improvement, expansion of intersections or sidewalks are also in East Yakima," Gutierrez said. "That's where a lot of the low income folks live."

Gutierrez said other cities like Mabton, Grandview and Toppenish already have this tax in place and have for more than 10 years to use for their roads and sidewalks.

Drivers will begin paying the higher fee in July 2018.

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