Will voters in Cedar Rapids and other Linn County communities continue to support the 'Paving for Progress' program? A November 2nd vote will tell that story. When voters cast their ballots that day, they'll answer whether or not to extend the current local options sales tax that funds the street work initiative, according to the Cedar Rapids Gazette.

And extension of the tax would allow cities to continue their 'Paving for Progress' street repairs. The tax hike from 6 cents to 7 cents went into affect in 2014, but is set to expire in 2024. A continuation of the program would extend that local options sales tax out until the year 2034. The Gazette reports that city leaders from Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha, Robins, Fairfax, and Linn County announced back in May that they were in favor of advocating for the extension of the tax. Voters in those five cities must agree to the November 2nd ballot question if the tax is to be extended.

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Cedar Rapids city council member Ann Poe told the Gazette that the 'Paving for Progress' program has contributed $122 million dollars to more than 200 projects that have improved over 60 miles of roadways. Council member Scott Olson told the Gazette that for the first time in years, the city is seeing work done in residential areas, and not just main streets. All that is due to the increased tax revenue.

So far, the Gazette reports that Marion has approved the issue for the November 2nd ballot. Linn County will set a date this week for unincorporated areas to vote, and Fairfax will also set a date to vote soon. Hiawatha and Robins will consider the issue later this month.

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