Dallas Slaps Fee on Garage Sales

Added revenue earmarked for Arboretum, cultural centers

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Nope, not without a permit you don't.

    Want to have a garage sale in Dallas? That will be $15, please.

    Well, not quite yet, but City Council earlier this week decided that a $15 fee on garage sales would help fill the gaping hole in the municipal budget, a lot like a shovelful of dirt would fill a hole dug for an Olympic-size pool.

    City officials project that the $15 fee — good for a one-year permit to conduct two sales a year, an ordinance already on the books — would generate $100,000 a year.

    That sounds cool, and the extra money would go to the Dallas Arboretum and the city’s cultural centers, which sounds even better, but go ahead, try to tell me that an added layer of municipal bureaucracy will not eat up $100,000 in about two bites.

    Bruce Felps owns and operates East Dallas Times, an online community news outlet serving the White Rock Lake area. He’s quite sure all those upstanding people who have more than two garage sales a year will willingly pony up $15.