If the county’s 10-year quarter-cent sales tax to pay for a new courthouse and coroner’s lab passes next November, Gardner stands to gain an annual additional $400,000 in revenue or $4 million over the course of the tax.
Since Kansas requires any sales tax levied by the county to be shared among cities, area cities would receive revenue over the 10-year life of the tax if it passes voter approval.
The county’s share of the 10-year quarter-cent sales tax would pay for the new courthouse and the coroner lab. However, 37 percent of the tax is distributed to Johnson County cities, and Gardner would receive about $4 million in additional sales tax revenue during that period.
According to an article by Dan Blom in the Prairie Village Post, over the 10-year life of the tax, here is what some other Johnson County cities would receive:

Prairie Village – $5.4 million
Mission – $2.3 million
Merriam – $3.3 million
Leawood – $11.7 million
Fairway – $1.1 million
Mission Hills – $1.7 million
Mission Woods – $69,000
Overland Park – $42.7 million
Roeland Park – $1.8 million
Westwood – $397,000
Westwood Hills – $104,000

Current sales tax rates (state and county only) are:
Missouri 5.775 (Jackson County)
Kansas 7.75 (Johnson County)
The Johnson County Board of County Commissioners recently approved a question for the November general election ballot asking voters to authorize a 1/4 cent public safety sales tax to fund construction of a new county courthouse and a coroner facility.
If passed, it would go into effect April 1, 2017.
The public safety sales tax would fund a new a new 28-courtroom courthouse across the street from the existing location on Santa Fe and Cherry Street in downtown Olathe, and a new coroner facility near the county’s crime lab at 119th Street and Ridgeview in Olathe.
The estimated cost of a new courthouse is $182 million. If the public safety sales tax does not pass, the county would renovate and add on to the existing courthouse costing an estimated $216 million, according to a county press release.
According to the county’s study, the renovation project would not adequately solve all of the courthouse’s current problems with safety and security, accessibility, and lack of space for future growth.
Sales tax revenue would also pay for a coroner facility estimated at a cost of $19 million. Currently Johnson County does not have a coroner facility. Autopsies are performed in Wyandotte County.
The approved ballot question:
“Shall the Board of County Commissioners of Johnson County, Kansas, for public safety projects, adopt and impose an additional one-fourth (1/4) of one-cent countywide retailers? sales tax in Johnson County, Kansas, to be levied from and after April 1, 2017, for a period of ten (10) years, ending on March 31, 2027, with the revenue from that tax to be distributed as required by law to the county and to the cities in Johnson County, and the county share to be used to fund the costs of construction and operation of public safety projects, including the construction of a courthouse building and a coroner facility, together with the costs to demolish the existing courthouse, and for the costs of programs and facilities related to those projects, including the courts, administration of justice, and District Attorney?”
More information on the new courthouse and coroner facility is available at www.jocogov.org/courthouse.