Clovis is sweating its finances. Will it ask voters to raise taxes?

All options are in play as Clovis looks to solve a budding financial crisis while increasing public services.

Could Clovis look to put a sales tax on the November ballot to hedge against the bleak financial position the city is facing? 

City Manager John Holt told The Sun that the city is exploring all options to provide high quality services to its residents. 


Driving the news: Holt posted a message on the city’s website saying state policies and national inflation have made it difficult for the city to provide the public safety services that the community has come to expect, saying crime and homelessness from nearby communities are coming to Clovis and that the recent storms have damaged the roads. 

  • Overall, Clovis is seeing its expenses grow faster than its revenues, in part driven by the 39 percent population increase from 2007 to 2023. 
  • Clovis had nearly 800 robberies and burglaries last year, as well as over 250 car thefts. The city’s fire department response time currently averages 11 minutes, nearly double the standard of six minutes and 30 seconds. 
  • The city is currently projecting a $1.3 million deficit for Fiscal year 2024-2025, with the five-year outlook at a $14 million deficit. 

The backstory: Clovis has been looking to tackle the funding issue for its public safety services for years. 

  • In December 2021 the Clovis City Council formed a citizens’ advisory committee to evaluate funding, operations and staffing levels for the police department. 
  • That came at the request of former Police Chief Matt Basgall and was fueled by the fact that the total number of police officers per 1,000 residents decreased from 1.68 in 2005-2006 to 1.4 in 2019-2020. 
  • The committee ultimately shirked a sales tax and proposed a transient occupancy tax, which took the form of Measure B in November 2022 and was passed by voters. Measure B – which raised the city’s transient occupancy tax from 10 percent to 12 percent – was projected to generate $500,000 annually to support public safety services. 

What we’re watching: Clovis is looking to the community for input on how to allocate its resources. Holt said in his post that the city is exploring innovative approaches to ensure the continued provision of high-quality services. 

What they’re saying: “As costs rise and revenues decline both locally and across the region, the City is exploring all options to ensure the continued high quality police and fire services Clovis residents rely on, and have come to expect,” Holt said in a statement to The Sun. “We are currently asking our residents to participate in the ongoing budget process to share their priorities by going to”

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