UTAH COUNTY – A tax referendum is starting to pick up steam in Utah County to repeal a 67.4 percent increase in property taxes.
But with more than 16,000 signatures to go in two weeks, organizers have got their work cut out.
In December, the Utah County Commission passed the tax increase to balance the county's budget and not dip into reserves.
That increase would raise around $19 million for the county, but those who are signing the referendum say the increase would be a burden on local businesses and homeowners.
“I was at all of those hearings and there were hundreds if not thousands of people that showed up and 99.5 percent of them spoke in opposition of it,” said Julie Blaney, the initial sponsor of the referendum.
March 2 is the drop-dead date for signatures to be turned in. The group needs 22,000, and right now they only have 6,000.
Part of the issue is that big stores are saying no to a referendum table outside.
Another issue is people are confused between this referendum and the statewide tax referendum last month.
“A lot of people that signed that thought they were signing the county property tax referendum,” Blaney said.
Despite the lack of signatures, Blaney is remaining optimistic.
“All it would take is for 100 people to engage and to take a book and go get 200 signatures in their book,” she said, "which is literally walking around their neighborhood for a few hours... We could have this wrapped up this week.”
If you want to find out more or know where to sign the referendum, visit rejecttaxincrease.com.