The board that oversees Little Rock parks and the city zoo last week asked city directors to hold an election for a  sales tax increase that would provide additional funding for the Little Rock Parks and Recreation Department’s capital improvement program.

City director Brad Cazort has proposed an 0.5% sales tax hike for parks department operations, with an additional temporary increase of 0.125% to 0.25% for capital projects. He said the increase could generate up to $22 million a year.

Cazort said the dedicated tax would allow the city to re-allocate the $10 million to $7 million now spent from the general fund for parks and zoo operations.

Little Rock has a city sales tax of 0.5%, one of the lowest municipal sales tax rates in Arkansas.

Mayor Mark Stodola said he supports a sales tax increase to generate more money for general city operations. However, he said any dedicated tax should be reserved for public safety agencies.

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