For the third time since Marceline first approved its half-cent Transportation Sales Tax on April 7, 1998, its voters are being asked to renew it for another five years. The tax, which is earmarked exclusively for the maintenance of Marceline’s streets, has not increased since it was first approved and will not increase if it is approved again by voters on April 2. As Marceline Street Superintendent Ed Ewigman has explained, “This money is placed in a separate account and can’t be used for anything but resurfacing our streets.”
Over the 15 years the half-cent Transportation Sales Tax has been in force, it has paid to repair or replace streets in more than 650 city blocks, according to Ewigman, and many of those roadways have been resurfaced more than once. During an informational presentation at the Marceline Chamber of Commerce’s latest meeting, the Street Superintendent expressed pride in how well Marceline’s streets have been maintained. He let his audience know about some of the more notable improvements he, his crew and contractors have been able to achieve thanks to the revenue made available by the Transportation Tax: “Some of the improvements...include the replacement of the curbs and gutters in a couple of very important areas of town that lots of folks see every day: The crosswalk at the school and California Street directly across from it, which is a dead-end street that was in really bad shape. We went in there and tore out all of the curbs and gutters and replaced them. We put in driveways for all the residents; they didn’t have driveways before, and they had to park on the street. We also gave them new storm drains.” Referring to the many motorists who drive on Highway 5 regularly to access Marceline R-5, among other destinations, Ewigman said, “I think it says a lot for our community, to the people who go to sporting events at the high school; they can see that it looks very good and compliments our sidewalks as well.” He continued, “The other area we did was just south of town, about six or eight blocks of Curtis Street; that was all new pavement. I have personally heard from a lot of residents who live in those areas that now that we have done this, we have not only raised their property values, they are proud to live where they do.” The Marceline Street Superintendent explained that what many residents don’t realize is that a large portion of the revenue generated by the Transportation Tax comes from folks living outside Marceline’s city limits, Ewigman included, who make purchases in Marceline.