Tucsonans to Be Surveyed About Potential Tax Hike Ballot Question

The Mayor and Tucson City Council voted yesterday to hire an outside pollster to survey Tucson residents about whether they would support a half-cent city sales tax increase. Mayor Jonathan Rothschild said the poll would cost $10,000-$20,000, but he said outside groups may be willing to pay the costs.

A half-cent sales tax increase would bring in about $50 million a year, but it must be approved by voters. The tax hike would bring the city rate to 2.5 percent, matching Oro Valley and Marana.

City Exploring Switching to LED Lighting

The Tucson Department of Transportation says it can deliver better lighting that saves energy and money without adding light pollution.

An energy audit conducted for the City by the vendor selling the lighting system says Tucson could save $180,000 a month on electrical costs and reduce overall lumens by 62 percent.

Unlike the current lighting system, the new lighting would be able to be dimmed or turned up as needed.

Any change would need to be approved by the Tucson City Council.

Public Comment Encouraged for Review of City Magistrate

The City of Tucson Magistrate Merit Selection Commission is reviewing an application for reappointment from City Magistrate Michael P. Pollard.

Public participation is encouraged from those who have had direct experience with the magistrate's courtroom. All comments should be submitted in writing by 5 p.m., Friday, Jan. 22, 2016, to:

City Magistrate Merit Selection Commission
City Clerk's Office
P.O. Box 27210
Tucson, AZ 85726-7210

Sun Tran to Add Fare Enforcement/Security Officers on Buses

Starting Jan. 15, Sun Tran Fare Enforcement Officers will ride select bus routes to help discourage fare evasion and unwanted behavior on the buses. Officers can issue citations that could result in fines ranging from $100-$2,500, depending on the severity and number of offenses.

Adding the officers is meant to increase the safety of passengers and drivers, make sure all passengers pay their fares, and help keep buses on time when issues arise.

Volunteers Needed to Count Homeless Later This Month

The Tucson Pima Collaboration to End Homelessness (TPCH) is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to conduct an annual count of people experiencing homelessness in our community. TPCH is a coalition of community and faith-based organizations, government entities, businesses, and individuals committed to the mission of ending homelessness and addressing the issues related to homelessness in our community.

Jack Hanna to Bring Animals to Live Event This Week

Through his two TV shows and late-night TV talk show appearances, Jack Hanna is a familiar name among wildlife lovers and the zoo community. The Director Emeritus of the Columbus Zoo is coming to Tucson this Thursday for "Jack Hanna's Into the Wild Live," presented in partnership with Reid Park Zoo. Tickets for the 6:30 p.m. show at the Fox Theatre are available online.