Boulder City Council on Tuesday gave final approval to send three measures to the November ballot for potential voter approval.
Two will ask permission to charge sales taxes to support open space and raise the cost of vaporized nicotine products, respectively, and the third, if passed, will allow the city to take out $10 million in debt to start a down payment assistance program for middle-income earners looking to buy a home in Boulder.
The open space tax is seeking voter approval for a 20-year extension of a 0.15% sales tax to go toward the city’s open space program, with the money collected in the first year reserved to purchase a conservation easement at the 25-acre Long’s Gardens property to prevent its owner from selling to a party that could seek to develop it.
The second sales tax, if approved, will give Boulder the option to charge a 40% sales tax on e-cigarettes and associated products, like nicotine-containing liquid vaporized by the devices. Council also has approved a ban the sale of flavored vapor products.
The $10 million in debt, if voters approve, will allow the city to help middle-income earners fill in gaps between the types of commercial loans they could qualify for and the cost of a mid-tier property in Boulder’s pricey market. Loans from the city would not have to be paid back for 10 years, at which point the full amount of the publicly financed loan would be due to the city.