Sales tax will increase by 1 percent at Eagle-Vail businesses starting Jan. 1 | VailDaily.com

Sales tax will increase by 1 percent at Eagle-Vail businesses starting Jan. 1

EAGLE-VAIL — On January 1, 2019, sales tax on goods and services sold within the Eagle-Vail Metropolitan District will increase by 1 percent.

For most retailers and service providers, that means a jump from 4.4 percent to 5.4 percent.

For marijuana products, the new tax will mean an increase from 19 percent to 20 percent.

High Country Healing manager Louis Magor said in Eagle-Vail, marijuana dispensaries on the section of U.S. Highway 6 known as the Green Mile have seen a few changes in sales tax recently, and he expects he'll see a few more.

"There was an increase of 2.5 percent from 1A, which will go up another 2.5 percent eventually," he said. "It happens. Some people ask about it, but most people don't seem to mind."

And even with the added 1 percent and the remaining room measure 1A, which was passed in November, "Our Eagle-Vail shop is still less sales tax than our Silverthorne shop," Magor said.

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NO $8.08 BURRITO

When examined alongside other nearby towns, tax in Eagle-Vail will remain comparatively less at 5.4 percent, a detail mentioned by many who contemplated the new tax.

"Around here, it's not unusual for sales tax to be 8, 9, 10 percent or more," said Bill Mimeles, of Edwards. "And around here, you can usually see the effects of these new taxes right away, so it's money well spent."

Mimeles was shopping in Eagle-Vail on Wednesday, May 9, a day after the 1 percent tax was passed by Eagle-Vail voters.

Eating at Rocky Mountain Taco, Mimeles said he would be happy to pay an extra 5 cents for two tacos, which sell for $5.

Rocky Mountain Taco owner Chris McGinnis said that won't happen this time.

Instead, he'll re-calculate his base prices to compensate for the tax increase in order for the total to remain the same.

"We'll keep even prices at $8 burritos and $5 for two tacos," he said. "We won't start charging $8.08 for a burrito — what would happen is we'd eventually increase to $9 if taxes, rent, expenses keep going up. But 1 percent I don't see as a big deal."

Beaver Divers owner Emily Zwaan said a 1 percent increase probably won't be enough to impact people's understanding of Eagle-Vail having lower taxes, but businesses like hers rely on that understanding as a selling point.

"I don't think it will have a significant impact on us, as long as they do what they say they're going to do with the money that's collected," she said.

2021 PROJECT

The tax can be used for improvements within the metro district, subject to metro district board approval.

It could also provide some matching funds for the Colorado Department of Transportation's Highway 6 resurfacing project, scheduled for 2021. With the tax going into effect in 2019, "It will give us a year to plan what our involvement in a project like that would be," said Jeff Layman, community manager with the Eagle-Vail Metropolitan District.

Additional funds from Eagle-Vail could make CDOT's project a little nicer for businesses on Highway 6, Layman said, and might even help to provide a trail along that section of the highway for bikes and pedestrians.

Contributions from Eagle-Vail's sales tax will "make that trail work for the public and the merchants who have their businesses along there," Lehman said.

Dano Bruno, with the Gorsuch ski tuning and boot-fitting center on Highway 6 in Eagle-Vail, said he is looking forward to CDOT's 2021 improvements along Highway 6 in Eagle-Vail, where the business is located.

With Gorsuch's Eagle-Vail location having a Montana Saphir tuning machine, a Race-Edge side tuner and a 3D CAD machine for boot fitting all under the same roof, the location provides a one-of-a-kind level of service in the United States, Bruno said.

It's doubtful a 1 percent sales tax will have any effect on those services, which were sought out by professional athletes during the Gorsuch Eagle-Vail debut season in 2017-18, but the tax will indeed be passed along to those high-level clients in 2019.

"We'll just have to wait and see what happens," Bruno said.