The Chula Vista Police Station. Courtesy of the Department

The Chula Vista City Council is considering asking voters to approve the second half-cent sales tax increase in two years, with the latest one earmarked for hiring more police and firefighters.

The council will consider the plan at its Tuesday meeting, which begins at 5 p.m. in the council chambers at 276 Fourth Avenue.

If the council decides to put the sales tax plan on the November ballot, and if the voters pass it, approximately $17 million annually in new revenue would flow into the city’s general fund. That would be enough to hire 43 more police officers and 36 more firefighters.

City officials say the police department has the lowest staffing-to-population ratio in San Diego County, while the response time to fire and medical emergencies is longer than it should be.

“Despite our city’s impressive safety record, the danger signs are out there; it is time to bring CVPD staffing to levels more in line with those of other law enforcement agencies in the region,” said Councilmember Pat Aguilar.

In November 2016, Chula Vista voters approved a half-cent sales tax for critical infrastructure improvements.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.