Torn between wanting better policing and opposing tax hikes, city officials have decided against supporting a $1 fee on motorists to help pay for a new countywide fingerprinting system.
Instead, they said, they would rather pick through their budget to find the $455,000 expected for the city's share of the $10-million fingerprint identification system. More than $250,000 in law enforcement grants have already been set aside for the system, according to the city manager's office.
County supervisors have the ultimate vote on the motorist fee, but the Orange County Chief's & Sheriff's Assn. is asking cities and school districts for resolutions in support of the plan.
The county's manual system of identifying prints is woefully inadequate, association officials said.
"It always causes a philosophical problem with me when we do a revenue, or tax, increase," Councilman Mark Murphy said. The rest of the council agreed and voted against the resolution Tuesday.