Saginaw’s budget woes have been complicated by a number of economic factors over the years. But city leaders say the biggest factor has been a 1979 voter initiative limiting the amount of property taxes the city can collect. The city can only collect the lower amount generated by 7.5 mills of property tax or $3.8 million.
Residents in the Adams Boulevard neighborhood are working with the Ezekiel Project to start a petition drive to put an effort to lift the cap on the ballot. Opponents of the cap say it forces the city to live on a budget in 2017 with a budget based on the 1979 economy.
Attempts to remove the tax cap have failed in seven previous elections.
City council members pledged their support but feel the effort has the best chance if citizens bring the repeal question to the ballot.