Media Relations Contact:
Mark A. Ball
March 28, 2017
DART Board pushes for no change in Dallas sales tax payment
The Dallas Area Rapid Transit Board of Directors is urging Dallas City Councilmembers to abandon plans to shore up a multi-billion shortfall in the Dallas Police and Fire Pension by reducing the city's commitment to pay the DART sales tax.
DART board members unanimously passed the resolution during their regularly scheduled meeting on March 28. In February, some Dallas city councilmembers advanced a proposal to reduce the city's obligated 1-cent sales tax by 1/8th of a cent. The objective was to apply the savings, approximately $35 to 40 million annually, to repair an approximate $4 billion deficit in the Dallas pension.
The resolution also points out if Dallas were successful in reducing its contribution, DART would reduce service within the city by that amount. This would result in significantly less bus and rail service in Dallas, affecting approximately 20,000 daily Dallas customers, as well as the loss of 250 to 350 jobs held by DART employees.
The DART resolution explains such a plan is not an option, since cities part of DART must commit a full one percent of sales taxes collected in their cities. DART received approximately $545 million in sales tax revenue from its 13 service area cities last year.
The Texas Legislature is currently reviewing a bill to repair the city's pension fund. The bill does not include DART funds as part of the repair plan.
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