KUNM

Santa Fe County To Propose Behavioral Health Tax

Sep 14, 2016

The Santa Fe County Commission will be asking voters if they would support a tax increase to pay for behavioral health services. Commissioners voted to include the question on the November ballot Tuesday night.

The question of whether to raise gross receipts taxes to pay for things like addiction treatment and transitional housing is a non-binding one, so it won’t actually raise taxes. But Santa Fe County commissioners decided to include it on the ballot to gauge where the public stands.

Commissioner Miguel Chavez, who introduced the measure, says there are tens of thousands of people in Santa Fe County who need help treating addiction or mental illness.

"There’s an unmet need for these behavioral health services. We’re dealing with case after case after case,” he said.

Chavez says if there is support for the non-binding tax increase, the commissioners will likely put up an actual tax hike in a future election that would fund long-term behavioral health services in Santa Fe County.