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Abolishing Mall Tax May Not Be Possible

June 22nd, 2020 by WCBC Radio

In March, just before the coronavirus hit in full force, Cumberland Mayor Ray Morriss said that he hoped to abolish the downtown special mall tax next year. That however, like everything else during the COVID-19 pandemic, might not be possible given the economic uncertainties facing the city. The special tax, or mall tax, is assessed annually to property owners in the historic downtown city center. The tax was enacted in 1977 to cover the cost of a bond sale needed to finance the construction of the pedestrian mall, however the bond was paid off nearly 10 years ago. When, or if, the mall tax is removed benefits such as such as special trash pickup, landscaping, snow removal and general maintenance could go away unless the city can identify another revenue stream to retain those services. Morriss now says that while the goal remains to eliminate the tax, until the city’s fiscal picture stabilizes, the idea has to be tabled…

7 Responses to “Abolishing Mall Tax May Not Be Possible”

  1. June 22, 2020 at 6:59 am, mac said:

    I cannot justify, in my mind, how the City will be able to collect a special mall tax when the plan now is to eliminate the mall. That will return Baltimore St. to being just another one way street downtown. Snow removal will return to City Maintenance and trash collection can be done the regular way.


  2. June 22, 2020 at 7:14 am, Ken said:

    They used the mall tax to pay for the bricking of Baltimore Street so reason only argues that the mall tax should be used to pay for Kelly & Jackson’s destruction of the mall.


    • June 23, 2020 at 12:52 pm, Ed Dodrill said:

      > I don’t know who this Jackson person is, but they need to go if they are tearing up the mall.


  3. June 22, 2020 at 10:04 am, Toast said:

    That really sucks. Let’s hope that it’ll be back on the table when we get back on our feet.


  4. June 22, 2020 at 4:07 pm, Bob said:

    He’s learning; if you don’t feel like doing something you said you would, just declare it to be impossible.


  5. June 22, 2020 at 9:45 pm, Ed Dodrill said:

    The city is using the tax for income. Businesses owners, just say “No.”


  6. June 23, 2020 at 1:34 pm, mac said:

    Mr. Mayor Morriss is using the typical political doublespeak to act as though he’s interested in eliminating the ‘tax’ but it just can’t be done right now. In 6 months or one year it will still be just out of reach.
    He will not end it.


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