‘City Sales Tax’ Will be Detrimental

The city went all out to sell this immoral, illegal tax

By Murat Kalinyaprak

It was first proposed in 2009 when I ran for City Commission. I unearthed that Polson was initially denied but later given resort designation based on faulty analysis of manipulated data. I exposed those documents and facts on my campaign website. It was voted down by 84%.

Recently, I created polsonresorttax.info website, which includes 2009 content and many new documents and current data.

City Commission was prodded to propose it again in 2016. Acting responsibly, they refused. One of many reasons was that it would cause resentment towards exempt tribal members and tribal businesses.

In a legally botched procedure last summer, EDC rehashed a proposal to City Commission. During the fall, ignoring all opposing concerns and abrogating facts, City Commission plodded to put it on a February 2, 2021 election.

2009 proposal was six months per year, for 10 years. Current proposal is 12 months per year, for 20 years. Stakes raised to “double or nothing,” the city went all out to sell this immoral, illegal tax through public and private presentations, and expensive ads.

This city misled voters with obscure, conflicting estimates, concealed some critical info and failed to answer what specific street projects will be funded. Important issues got overlooked while people were distracted by endless details, like whether a 100-year-old chair is a taxable $10 antique or exempt $1,000 used furniture.

If this tax passes, simple events like sharing a meal with an exempt friend, sitting at the same table and splitting the bill, will become awkward experiences and eat at our placid coexistence. Especially after the recent insurrection attempt, when a split nation is trying to unite back, it will be a reckless mistake to split our own small community into “cowboys and indians.”

Murat Kalinyaprak

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