Here’s what Mission voters need to know about a special sales tax election next month

Mission sales tax

The current 0.375% sales tax has been in place since 2013 and helped fund the Mission Family Aquatic Center, which opened in 2014. Photo credit Bek Shackelford-Nwanganga.

Mission voters will soon be asked to renew a sales tax dedicated to the city’s parks and recreation services in a special mail-in election this September.

What to expect: On the mail-in ballot, Mission residents will be asked to vote either “Yes” or “No” on an initiative to renew a three-eighths percent, or 0.375%, citywide retail sales tax.

  • That sales tax was first approved by voters in 2012 and the revenue raised by it goes to Mission’s parks and recreation department.
  • The current tax, which went into effect in 2013, is set to expire in March 2023.
  • The sales tax generates around $1 million of annual revenue.

What a “Yes” vote means: A “Yes” vote would renew the 0.375% sales tax until March 2033.

  • These funds would be used to make upgrades to Mission’s major outdoor parks, including Mohawk, Broadmoor, Waterworks, Anderson and Streamway.
  • Additionally, the funds will be used to maintain the Sylvester Powell Community Center and the Mission Family Aquatic Center.
  • The 0.375% tax means consumers will pay about 4 extra cents on a $10 purchase and $0.38 on a $100 purchase within the city.

What a “No” vote means: A “No” vote would be for not renewing the sales tax.

  • The city says if the ballot measure fails then it would have to come up with alternate funding sources for parks and recreation improvements.
  • As it stands, the sales tax covers 89% of parks and recreation funding in Mission, according to the city. .
  • The only other tax revenue specifically dedicated to parks and recreation is from a portion of a special alcohol tax, which generates $125,000 annually.
  • Regardless of the outcome next month, the current 0.375% sales tax will remain in effect through March 2023.

Make sure you are registered: To vote in this election, residents of Mission must be registered to vote by Tuesday, August 30.

  • Registered voters should expect to receive mail-in ballots at their home address on or around September 2.
  • You do not need to re-register to vote if you are already registered. To check your voter registration status, use the county’s official election voter lookup tool here.

How to vote: This is a mail-in only election, and ballots must be completed and returned to the county election office by Tuesday, Sept. 20 at noon.

  • Postage is pre-paid, and ballots can be mailed at any U.S. Postal Service location or dropped off in the drop box outside of the Johnson County Election Office at 2101 East Kansas City Road, Olathe, KS, 66061.
  • If you do not receive your ballot in the mail and you are registered to vote, you can request a replacement ballot from the Johnson County Election Office.
  • Replacement ballots must be submitted by noon on September 20, as well.

Why it matters: The city of Mission maintains eight parks as well as the Powell Community Center and the Mission Family Aquatic Center.

  • Emily Randel, Assistant City Manager for the city says the 2021 City of Mission Community Survey indicated that residents want to see more investment in Mission’s outdoor parks.
  • She says over the past decade, the sales tax revenue has helped fund projects, including the new Mission Family Aquatic Center, updated tennis courts at Anderson Park and addressing deferred maintenance at the Powell Community Center.
  • To read more about what the city says the tax revenue has funded, visit the city’s website.

Want more info? There is a town hall meeting on Wednesday, August 31 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Powell Community Center, 6200 Martway Street for residents to get more information on the election.