Pelham considering sales tax increase

Published 5:56 pm Monday, July 8, 2013

Pelham is considering a 1-cent sales tax increase to support the city's schools, including Pelham High School. (File)

Pelham is considering a 1-cent sales tax increase to support the city’s schools, including Pelham High School. (File)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

The Pelham City Council will hold a public hearing during its Monday, July 15 meeting to gather input on possibly raising the city’s sales tax by 1 percent.

The public hearing is scheduled to be held during the council’s regular meeting, which will begin at 7 p.m. at Pelham City Hall.

According to a letter issued by Pelham Finance Director Tom Seale, the sales tax increase, if passed, would “support education in Pelham.”

Pelham leaders currently are considering forming a Pelham city school system separate from the Shelby County School System, and have had three public hearings on the matter.

Pelham is one of the only cities in Shelby County currently with an 8 percent total sales tax. Most of its surrounding cities currently have 9 percent sales tax rates.

If Pelham passes a 1-cent sales tax increase, it will follow in the footsteps of Alabaster, which passed a 1-cent sales tax increase in 2011 to help fund an Alabaster City School System.

Alabaster’s 1-cent sales tax increase feeds a city school fund, which is earmarked for the city’s schools and is controlled by the Alabaster Board of Education.

According to a Pelham school system feasibility study released in early June, the city would generate about $4.62 million in additional revenue per year by passing a 1-cent sales tax increase.