Special election possible for Blytheville courthouse

Special election possible for Blytheville courthouse

MISSISSIPPI COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - Mississippi County voters might head to polls in an August special election to decide on a new courthouse in Blytheville.

The election will be August 9.

The election is not addressing the issue of courthouse consolidation or county seat consolidation. The vote will only be about the construction of a new Blytheville facility.

The Mississippi County Quorum Court's finance committee already has an agreement from the Mississippi County Hospital System board to split the hospital's sales tax revenue.

That is only if the five-year sunset on the tax would be suspended until the debt from the county's proposed $20 million construction project is paid off.

This would give both the county and the hospital system a projected revenue of $1.7 million per year.

The county also plans to issue bonds for the project.

Council predicts that the bond issue would take 27 years to pay off, but to meet the requirements of the bond, only $1.2 million in revenues is required.

This leaves $500,000 each year that must be dedicated in the ballot language to spending for "maintenance and operations" throughout the county.

If the full quorum court approves both ordinances in their next meeting, voters will see a choice on the ballot to amend the hospital tax and extend the sunset.

The court will meet Tuesday, April 26 at the Osceola Courthouse at 7 p.m.

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