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Bethel city council set to consider flight tour tax and ballot proposition about mask mandates

City of Bethel

During their July 12 meeting, Bethel City Council is set to vote on a proposal that would add the city’s sales tax to local flights. The city has not been applying its sales tax to tickets for air charters or flight-seeing trips. If this ordinance passes, it will begin taxing those flights at its 6% rate.

During its previous meeting, the ordinance faced backlash from local air charter companies.

Also during their July 12 meeting, the Bethel City Council is expected to vote to add a ballot proposition onto its October municipal election ballot. The ballot proposition will determine whether the City of Bethel has the authority to issue mask mandates.

Although the council is set to vote on the measure, it’s just a formality. Because enough voters, over 117 of them, asked for the proposition, it must appear on the ballot either way.

The council is also set to vote on a measure that would allot more funding to the fire department. It wants to take $55,727 out of the city’s combined cash budget to cover Bethel Fire Department overtime. According to the city manager, firefighters have been working lots of extra shifts since the department lost many of its volunteer firefighters over the past year. The fire chief said that the department lost about 90% of its volunteers during the pandemic.

The city council meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. To sign up for "People to be Heard," you can either attend in person or over Zoom. If you just want to listen to the meeting, you can tune into KYUK 640 AM.

Olivia Ebertz is a News Reporter for KYUK. She also works as a documentary filmmaker. She enjoys learning languages, making carbs, and watching movies.
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