On May 16, 2023, Hailey voters passed a reallocation of the “1% for Air Local Option Tax, allocating 0.5% of that tax for housing for “Hailey citizens and workers who are housing-burdened” and 0.5% of that tax for “maintaining and increasing commercial air service.”
This ballot measure passed by 85% of those who voted in Hailey.
The tax will remain in effect until 2050, creating a new revenue stream for community housing solutions. This year, the tax will generate approximately $78,500-$80,000 for housing. Background on the tax can be found here. The new Housing and Steering Committees will advise the Hailey City Council, per the 2023 voter-approved ballot language, about how to:
- Develop community housing for families living and working in Hailey;
- Direct ancillary costs that are associated with the ongoing effort to develop community housing for families living and working in Hailey; and
- Direct costs to collect and enforce the tax, including administrative and legal fees.
Hailey Mayor Martha Burke pledged that, if the tax passed, she would propose a public process to engage Hailey citizenry as to how the new tax dollars should be spent. To that end, the mayor issued a call for names on May 24, 2023, with a goal of creating a 5–7-member Housing Committee that represents our community diversity. Interested citizens were asked to submit a letter of interest within 30 days to Lisa Horowitz, Hailey City Administrator.
Eighteen (18) letters of interest have been received. Eighteen (18) is a large group for a committee, so a hybrid approach is proposed: Mayor and staff recommend that the larger group of eighteen (18) be used as a broad citizens Housing Committee, and that a narrower Steering Committee of five (5) housing committee members be appointed to meet bi-monthly and assist in developing the agenda and materials for the larger group. The larger Housing Committee will meet every 4-6 weeks for the next 6 to 9 months.