The taxman cometh

It is time that local folks start paying attention to the recent propensity of our local governing bodies to raise taxes and fees at every opportunity and how they chose to do it. City Council members believed that doubling of the Police and Fire Fees, which is only paid by property owners, to be the most politically expedient. Politicians created the problem and are now taking the easy way out and shifting the burden to property owners only.

The unfunded pension issue has long been a problem that was dumped on our new Mayor who knew it had to be addressed. How council chose to address the problem may have been the easiest way out but certainly not the fairest or even the most prudent.

Another troubling tax decision is the home rule sales tax increase that was supposed to be revenue neutral when first proposed but has reportedly resulted in millions in additional revenue that could have been used to help manage the unfunded liability of pensions.

Not to be left in the cold, now the county wants their share of home rule taxes by creating a new tax sales of 1 percent. So far they have not mentioned any offset which was part of the original deal when cities were allowed this opportunity. The county already raised our taxes this year by an increase in the mill rate which was accomplished without much fanfare. This is on top of the fire fees that the county has imposed on county residences last year. Where is all of that money going and who regulates those account are all things we need to start looking into.

Like on the state and federal level where most want terms limits to rid us of career politicians, its time to make the same consideration on the local level. Politicians don’t seems to mind spending other people’s money. Even on the local level.

Denny Harton