The City Paper's Joey Garrison reports that a telephone poll funded by Mayor Karl Dean's campaign committee is testing the turbulent waters of public opinion to see how Nashvillians feel about the notion of a property tax hike, along with several other issues including mass transit, financing a Sounds stadium and subsidizing the Predators.
The City Paper obtained audio of a phone survey that began with broad questions on the performance of Dean and the Metro Council, the quality of public schools and mass transit, the state of Nashville’s economy and possible local government cuts. The pollster asked for the voting frequency of the respondent and whether he or she is a member of the media.
Fifteen minutes into the survey, questions took a sharper focus, particularly on the possibility of a property tax increase. Metro’s last property tax increase came in 2005. Many observers believe Dean’s administration will have to increase Metro’s current $4.13 property tax rate to keep the city financially afloat.
“Would you favor or oppose raising the current property tax rate of $4.13 by 50 cents in order to raise revenue to maintain core programs and services?” the pollster asked.
This particular respondent did not offer support. (Raising Metro’s property tax rate by 50 cents would not be a large enough spike to trigger a public referendum on the matter.)
The pollster then tested the mood of raising the local option sales tax by one-half percent in addition to a 25-cent property tax hike. Again, the participant didn’t offer support.
Read the whole story here.