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Council Proposal Seeks Food & Beverage Tax Dollars For COVID-Affected Businesses

Rebecca Green/WBOI News

A non-binding proposal in Fort Wayne City Council is calling on Allen County’s Capital Improvement Board to help financially support the local hospitality and restaurant industry as the COVID-19 pandemic takes a toll on their business across the country.

4th District Republican Jason Arp says in his proposal that a 1% tax on all prepared food and beverages sold in Allen County is used to pay off Allen County War Memorial Coliseum debt, with an additional $100,000 going towards a due diligence fund. He adds in the language that it is “unconscionable” for the CIB to rake in revenues from county businesses “that are not being utilized and being retained for future possible investments.”

Arp is asking the CIB to “do an analysis of its current and anticipated financial position and evaluate and report any ability to provide a grant or loan to businesses that generate the Supplemental Food and Beverage Tax as an Economic Development Project.”

Upon that review, Arp would like to see the CIB report back within 30 days.

The proposal also calls on state senators and representatives to re-evaluate the food and beverage tax “to allow local officials more ability to manage and monitor this tax including issuing a moratorium or reallocating.”

Zach joined 89.1 WBOI as a reporter and local host for All Things Considered, and hosted Morning Edition for the past few years. In 2022, he was promoted to Content Director.