With a sales tax hike on the Kodiak City Council agenda tonight, there could very well be a large number of people exercising several elements of the First Amendment, such as the rights to peaceably assemble, to free speech and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
There will be a public hearing before the council takes the final vote on the one percentage point increase in sales tax from six pennies on the dollar to seven. Included in the resolution is an increase in the sales tax cap, which is the most one can pay in taxes for any single purchase. Currently, tax is paid only on the first $750 spent. If passed, tax will be required on the first $3,500 of a purchase.
Later in the meeting there are several items on the agenda authorizing expenditures, including a vehicle purchase for public works, the purchase of road salt and fuel. The renewal of the animal shelter contract with the Humane Society of Kodiak is also up for a vote.
With the relatively short agenda, there hopefully will not be any violations of the Eighth Amendment for those seated on the rock-hard chairs in the spectator section of the council chambers. The Eighth Amendment is the one about cruel and unusual punishment.
And if you can’t get enough of our governing bodies exercising democracy tonight, the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly will be meeting at the same time, just a few steps away in the assembly conference room downstairs. On its work session agenda is a review of applications for the job of borough manager, and discussions with the Kodiak Homeless Coalition and the Kodiak Regional Aquaculture Association.
Both meetings start at 7:30 p.m., and KMXT will broadcast the city council meeting live.