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Carefree using upgrades to draw in visitors

PHOENIX — Leaders in the town of Carefree said they need to spend money to make money.

“Carefree is one of the very few towns that does not have a property tax,” said Councilmember Melissa Price.

The town of about 3,500 residents relies heavily on sales tax revenues to pay for police, fire, roads and town staff. Price said businesses have slowly died and sales tax revenues haven’t grown. That’s why they are focused on making Carefree more attractive to visitors.

Recently, Carefree installed pedestrian lights, banners, free Wi-Fi and a desert garden in the town center.

“We see it becoming more and more a local town that you can walk through and make an afternoon visit and know you’re going to have beautiful gardens to walk through as well as go shopping,” said Price.

She said future plans include improving the amphitheater and installing a small splash pad for kids.

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