This year, Salt Lake County voters have a choice on their ballot. The Zoo Arts and Parks tax (ZAP) renewal is a question on the back side of the ballot along with the state constitutional amendment and the judicial retentions that are up for vote this year.
However, many people don’t know exactly what the ZAP tax is or what it is for.
What is the ZAP tax?
The tax is equal to 1/10th 0f 1% (1 cent on every 10 dollars) and is used by Salt Lake County for the Hogle Zoo, arts programs in the county, and parks. In addition to helping to keep Salt Lake City’s Hogle Zoo operating, it also helps some of the following facilities and organizations:
- Utah Museum of Fine Arts
- Utah Natural History Museum
- Pioneer Theatre Company
- Hale Center Theater
- Utah Symphony
- Tracy Aviary
- Jordan River Commission
As well as many others. The ZAP program actually disperses funds to over 190 different organizations and park and recreation facilities that enhance our way of life in Salt Lake County and the opportunities we have to experience history, culture and nature (yes, I am a big fan of all these things).
Why are we voting for it, again?
The Zoo, Arts and Parks program is authorized by Utah State statute, but the local communities must vote to renew it every 10 years. The first time was in 1994, the second in 2004, and we are now on the third renewal of the Salt Lake County ZAP Program. If you are super interested in the statute, it is Title 59 Chapter 12.
What do I get out of it?
The benefits of the ZAP tax are many. Including making Salt Lake County an exciting place to live and helping with economic growth, there are many opportunities to receive free admission to museums, concerts, and shows. It also helps with preserving trails, building green belts and developing access within Salt Lake County . It is estimated that the tax helps bring in over 60 million dollars in revenue because of the opportunities afforded to it.
How do I know if I am voting for it?
If you live in Salt Lake County, it’s on the ballot.