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Sales tax proposal could benefit some schools, but hurt city

DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) -- A proposal on the ballot would give more money to schools, and school officials say they could use it to increase building security. 

It's a one percent sales tax increase across the county, but some city leaders in Danville are against it.

Mayor Scott Eisenhauer says he's not in favor of the sales tax increase because it could negatively affect the city. 

The sales tax for Danville is already higher than most surrounding areas and, if the sales tax goes up by another percent, Eisenhauer says Danville's will be the highest south of Cook County.

"That is not a good position to be in, so what worries me is, even though I recognize why the money is needed, and what good the money can do, we're all going to see a diminish in those returns, because we're not going to be able to attract those shoppers that we once did, we won't be able to attract the retailers that are deciding to locate in Danville today."

The city uses sales tax money to pay for things like police, fire department, streets and parks.  Eisenhauer says he's worried if the sales tax increases, the money schools get will decrease because more people would go outside Danville to shop.

Voters will decide March 20. Eisenhauer says he's not sure if it'll pass or not because he hasn't heard from many people who feel strongly about either side. 

If the proposal does pass, Danville's sales tax will go up to 10.25 percent. It would be the same rate as Chicago. In Champaign and Urbana, the sales tax is 9 percent.

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