The Orange County Taxpayers Association (OCTax) has developed a useful online tool that enhances transparency and provides taxpayers a user-friendly resource to see how much they pay in taxes and where those taxes go. A City-by-City webpage (which can be accessed by clicking on the image) lists all 34 Orange County cities alphabetically with their names and city seals. Simply clicking on any city logo will reveal information about how sales tax dollars are distributed and what each city's unfunded pension liability is.
"We want to make sure that for local taxes, Orange County taxpayers have a place to find specific information," said OCTax CEO Carolyn Cavecche. "Transparency is an important principle of sound tax policy."
These pages, found on the OCTax website (www.octax.org), ensure transparency and are easy to use. They are designed to help taxpayers understand their local tax burden; to see what you pay and where it goes. Following the trail for property taxes is difficult, with information in hard to reach places for the individual taxpayers. Our elected County Auditor-Controller, Eric Woolery, agreed to work with OCTax so that in the future, figuring out where your property tax dollars are spent is more transparent and easier to find. This information will be included as it becomes more available.
OCTax also included links that break down how sales tax dollars are distributed, as well as a link to the Orange County Transportation Authority website, our county's transportation agency that is spending your Measure M half-cent Sales Tax. Unfunded Pension Liabilities as well as the General Fund dollars spent by individual city councils will be updated each year. Next year, all cities will be required to include specific pension liabilities in their financial documents, and OCTax will be verifying that they do.
OCTax will be adding information throughout the year, so be sure to check back to see how your city compares so you can hold your city leaders accountable.