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WEST POINT, Miss. (WCBI) – The September 8th proposition will ask voters to decide on a 1% tax increase for restaurants and businesses.

City officials in West Point say the revenue created will produces jobs, increase tourism, and promote recreation and beautification. The election will be held on a Saturday and voter turnout is expected to be low.

Some residents believe that their property taxes will increase but Cynthia Wilson of the Growth Alliance says West Point residents should not be concerned. There is no property tax but an optional tax that will be incurred when you visit a restaurant or hotel.

West Point city officials say that the 1% tax increase is necessary, but when I spoke with some business owners they seemed to be on both sides of the issue.

Tracey Styron of the Hampton Inn & Suites said, “I don’t think it’ll affect our business any. I think it’s needed for the city of West Point. It will definitely help promote tourism and help build the economy. I think it’ll help West Point to grow.”

Cathy’s Restaurant on Highway 45 Alternate is not in favor of the tax increase. “We have a lot of local business, not just travelers thru. So I believe that it will affect. It’s going to ultimately come from the tax payers money. It’s going to cost them, it hurts us. I just don’t believe it’s going to benefit,” Karen Shaffer said.

The election will be held on Saturday and voter turnout is expected to be low. The Growth Alliance in West Point hopes it promoted the campaign well so that residents are well informed.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. at the Civic Center.  Curb-side voting will be available for the disabled and hearing impaired.

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