LIHUE, KAUAI (HawaiiNewsNow) - For the second year in a row, Kauai County has produced a balanced budget without increasing property taxes.
But the mayor is pushing for an increase in the general excise tax to generate more revenue.
In his State of the County address Thursday morning, Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. revealed his $200 million spending plan for 2017.
To make up for a drop in hotel taxes, he's urging the council to approve a half-percent GET surcharge to raise $20 million per year.
"By taking advantage of this funding opportunity, we would be able to address the public's No. 1 priority as noted in surveys,namely improvements to our roads and bridges and the alleviation of traffic congestion," Carvalho said.
The mayor also wants to spend $800,000 to generate options for solid waste when the Kekaha Landfill closes in 2026.
He also plans to buy new equipment for county employees, and fund new homeless initiatives, and the Lihue Civic Center will be getting a new roof.