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Chico City Council holds special meeting discussing sales tax, police oversight

On June 23 the Chico City Council organized a special meeting. Only topics on the agenda could be discussed or voted on during the meeting.

Posted: Jun 23, 2020 9:32 PM
Updated: Jun 24, 2020 9:30 AM

CHICO, Calif. - On June 23, the Chico City Council organized a special meeting. The Mayor and Vice Mayor's police reform plans and policy changes were also in question.

A half-cent sales tax spike needed five council members to vote yes in order for the proposal to be on the November ballot.

The half-cent spike would be expected to bring in $9 million dollars and would go into effect in 2022.

"Sales tax increase is a general tax increase that increases city revenue by about nine million dollars as a general tax it's utilized for general and essential services," said Chico Assistant City Manager Chris Constantine.

Councilmember Randall Stone voted no on the sales tax increase.

"You wanna tax the people in my district? Residents proportionally more with a regressive tax for [$9] million that's going to go towards what -- no officer reform?" said Stone. "I can't imagine that in general. But I certainly can't imagine it immediately while we're going into one of the greatest economic devastations this area has seen."

The council voted against placing the sales tax increase measure on the ballot.

Another topic on the agenda was Mayor Ann Schwab's proposal for a Community Police Oversight Committee.

The committee would consist of the mayor herself, the Interim Chief of Chico Police Matt Madden, two other councilmembers, two members of the Chico police officer's association, and active community members.

"We're not afraid to continue to review our policies and training and look to make sure they're in line with state and federal law, as well as best practice issues for law enforcement," said Interim Chief of Chico Police Matt Madden.

Vice Mayor Alex Brown and supporters agree with the Community Police Oversight Committee.

"A review board for the police department was something that I was looking to discuss as was Vice Mayor Brown, so we merged those together," says Stone.

You can watch the meeting, HERE.

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