Whalum, Mulroy debate on sales tax hike - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Whalum, Mulroy debate on sales tax hike

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County Commissioner Steve Mulroy County Commissioner Steve Mulroy
Shelby County School Board Commissioner Dr. Kenneth Whalum, Jr. Shelby County School Board Commissioner Dr. Kenneth Whalum, Jr.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - On Election day Shelby County voters will decide whether to raise the sales tax rate a half-cent for education.

The referendum sparked a spirited debate on Action News 5's morning show Saturday.

Shelby County School Board Commissioner Dr. Kenneth Whalum, Jr. explained why he's against the sales tax hike for education.

"Because we cannot guarantee what the funds are going to be used for," said Whalum.

County Commissioner Steve Mulroy countered it's an opportunity to $31 million from non-Memphians who use Memphis amenities without paying property taxes.

"The school board has passed a resolution that it's 'dedicated and committed,' that's a quote, to expanding pre-k," said Steve Mulroy

In the morning show, Whalum  was asked if there's any truth to concerns he has a vendetta against the organization throwing funds behind the sales tax referendum.

Stand for Children also funded the opponent who beat him in the school board race.

"It has nothing to do with that.  It has to do with the very kids in the neighborhoods Stand for Children and others are proposing that we close schools.  They want to close 21 schools in the neighborhoods where your kids live," said Whalum.

Stand for Children was watching the live debate and sent a statement they "do not support school closures."

Mulroy was asked about concerns for Stand for Children funnels special interest money in -S from outside the community - to influence local races.

""It's actually not true.  The majority of the money was raised locally. Second  and more importantly, I'm less concerned about Stand for Children's role in this than I am the Shelby County Democratic Party, the NAACP, Mid-South Peace and Justice Center, Mayor Wharton, Congressman Steve Cohen," said Mulroy. 


     
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