At its annual retreat the Boulder City Council agreed to make affordable housing a priority and will meet with its affordable housing task force to discuss a report the group published last fall. The report identified four possible revenue streams: a head tax on workers in city limits; a hotel or accommodations tax; a general sales tax or a property tax. At the time the report was released the Council opted not to delve deeply into decisions about affordable housing, choosing to marshal its resources on the municipal utility ballot issues instead.
Two City Councilors, George Karakehian and Ken Wilson, want a conference center, which would bring tax revenues and possibly help rehabilitate the City’s non-business friendly image. Note: Like many councils in our area this one is split with one group having more of a social/environmental agenda and the other focusing on business and economic development. In Boulder the social/environmental council group has the majority. What is really different is that the mayor is selected by the Council, unlike the process in other cities where the mayor is elected to serve in that position. This gives the mayor special clout but also creates a unique tension between the two factions.