The Editorial


The Third B tax is set to take effect July 1 in Brookings. But the Students’ Association is trying to stop that from happening.

The tax is an extra penny on the three B’s: bed, board and booze. The money from the tax is used for promotion of the city.

SDSU’s mandatory meal plans for students who live on-campus falls under the tax because the meal plans are prepared food. So all students who live on-campus are required to pay the tax because of mandatory meal plans.

Since April, members of SA and the Brookings City Council have been discussing ways to compensate for the tax money students have to pay. But there was a huge misunderstanding.

SA was under the impression that the university would receive a check for $35,000, while the council wanted to put a few students on a planning committee that would decide how the money would be used.

SA President Amanda Mattingly wasn’t aware that the council would not be giving the money until Feb. 15, nine days before a referral had to be made in order for the city to vote on the matter.

Feeling betrayed, the SA decided to pass around a petition. They are going to great lengths to get this issue to a vote so they can defeat it.

The SA has a right to be angry. They were toyed around by the council. They allowed the students to believe that they would get money so they wouldn’t fight the issue. Then they waited until there was barely enough time left to gather enough signatures for a referral. If they didn’t plan to give the university the money back, they should have made that clear.

Mayor Scott Munsterman said the council had a problem giving the students $35,000, but would the council really listen to students’ ideas for the money?

If SDSU students have to pay this tax, then they deserve some of it back. And it should come back to them directly.

Don Urguhart, owner of Jim’s Tap, is a firm believer that the students should get a portion of the money back, and not just because of meal plans. He said students spend the most money on prepared food and alcohol.

“Instead of calling it a visitor’s tax, it should be a student’s tax,” he said.

He has a good point. SDSU contributes to a lot of the revenue that Brookings brings in, not only from what students purchase, but the visitors that come to Brookings because of SDSU.

If the Third B tax does take effect on July 1, then SDSU students would probably still reap the benefits from whatever the council would do with the money. But the point is, the SA was told they would receive the money and then that they wouldn’t. Because they were tossed around, the Third B should be defeated.

Anyone wishing to sign the petition should contact Mattingly at the SA office.