Sales tax hike on April ballot for Boone County voters

BOONE COUNTY, Ill. (WIFR) -- A sales tax hike is on the ballot tomorrow for all of Boone County, with the aim of keeping the county safer.

It's the second attempt to increase the county's sales tax by a half perfect to 8.25% which would put it even with Rockford's current rate.

The money would go toward repairs to the Boone County Courthouse and 20-year-old jail. As well as adding more deputies, squad cars and guns.

"Currently we are 7 officers down from where we were in 2008", says Boone County Sheriff David Ernest. "Most of the time we're running with four officers county wide which is really inexcusable for a county of this size. Our courtroom leaks and every time it rains we have an officer move about 6 or 7 buckets to different locations throughout the courthouse. Quite frankly, it's an embarrassment."

Sheriff Ernest says the sales tax increase would not go on groceries, medicine or titled goods like farm machinery or vehicles.