Meals Tax Proposal Set for Feb. 12 Vote

A divided Richmond City Council forwards the mayor's plan to raise the tax to 7.5 percent after a failed attempt to postpone action for 30 days



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Meals Tax

It is deplorable what the Council did last night. Yes, let's just go ahead and vote for the first and easiest option presented instead of being thoughtful about it. My councilmember, Agelasto, presented several very good options - including a cigarette tax! Really, you'd rather have an increased restaurant tax than a cigarette tax? Who's in Altria's pocket now. It's disgusting. The restaurant owner is right too, it is a huge detractor to bringing business to the city. This council all cry that we have to do something right away, but have deferred the problem for years.

Karin Sheets more than 1 year ago

Meals tax

Have they considered a hospitality tax? Why not tax hotel and conference ? Makes the same sense as meals. Or a Tabacco Tax? Or just issuing bonds to raise funds?

RGS more than 1 year ago


I'm a little disappointed that this write-up does not mention that the additional $9 million in revenue to be generated from the meal tax proposal would increase the city's borrowing capacity by $150 million. That's not just an insignificant fraction of our capital needs, it's actually a significant portion of the next 5 years of the facilities plan approved by School Board. Public discussion on the meal tax proposal was preceded by a detailed presentation from the city's CAO Selena Cuffee-Glenn and finance director John Wack, which clearly explained the reasoning behind the meals tax proposal and the amount of money it would ultimately generate for RPS.

Furthermore, I think it's a little irresponsible to take at face value Councilperson Gray's assertion that businesses in her district are being negatively affected by BRT. The only evidence she's offered to this effect has been purely anecdotal. As a 2nd District resident who is accustomed to waiting 45-60 minutes for a brunch table along the Pulse corridor, I have just as much anecdotal evidence to the contrary. As property values rise along the Pulse corridor and as new employees and customers are ferried to the front doors of our locally owned businesses, I hope the unfounded stigma around BRT will begin to dissipate.

I think it's wise to give the claims of our elected officials careful scrutiny and to avoid printing regurgitation of their unverified, and often inaccurate, personal opinions and biases.

Jimmie Lee Jarvis more than 1 year ago

Debt Capacity

Thank you for your comment. We've added an explanation about the increased borrowing capacity, which we had reported in a previous article about the meal tax proposal. We also published an article in November, "Expressing Frustration," in which business owners commented on the impact of BRT construction. more than 1 year ago

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