Taxes, taxes, taxes -- That's the way it's going to be
To the editor:
What's Jonesboro's elected official's motive for more taxes?
In my opinion, and all I've heard from a collective few at each Jonesboro City Council meeting is simply: "We're not going to save any money, and that's that! Our employees deserve the best, and you're going to pay for it. We need your property tax dollars."
I mean, that's it, the bottom line, their whole argument.
I'm not opposed to taxes -- if they are needed. But, they're clearly not needed right now.
These collected few have been shown that taxes are not needed. At the first budget hearing we had, some council members were considering furloughs and layoffs to cut the budget. It was made clear by our mayor that there is no one in his office he could furlough. Nor will there be any layoffs. Taxes are needed to cover the city's expenses.
This, with no regard to the citizens, who are fighting to stay afloat every day during this economic crisis. Some of them have been furloughed from their jobs. Absolutely no concern for the citizens they are supposed to represent.
There is no showing of good faith to the taxpayers. It is clearly a power trip, with no end in sight -- except "pay the tax." "Just cough it up," is the basis of their argument.
There are three council members trying to fight off taxes, but they're hitting their heads against the wall with the other three and the mayor. They're at their wit's end.
One councilman put on the January agenda that the city might need to park the police cars [that officers take home after work], to save money. Evidently, that's not going to fly, as was indicated at the January council meeting.
It hasn't come to a vote yet, but there was discussion over this matter. At the end of the discussion, Councilmember Pat Sebo said it's only $45 [the tax increase] the city is asking for. She also commented that we have reworked this budget four times. I'm thinking to myself: "How the heck does it take four times to work a budget? Did something happen and they had to move numbers around to get it the way they wanted it to look?"
They did admit it was a fictional piece of work. So why do it four times? If it's fictional, it seems to me the first time would have been enough, wouldn't it?
But wait, isn't there a motion on the table right now to be voted on at the February meeting? Where the city can save approximately $100,000 a year by sitting down the police cars? Looks to me like that's going to get shot down, too.
Many citizens stood up and spoke and pointed out how the city could save money. Some valid points were made. But, after all was said and done, the same song and dance was thrown at them. "Nope, we're not doing that. We need your tax dollar to balance out the budget."
Well, if it's not clear to you yet, it is certainly clear to me. All I have heard is, "This is the way it's going to be and we need your tax money. We're not going to try anything else, except TAXES!"
But I do have a bit of goods news. Election time is coming up, and all this can be changed back to the way it was, once these tax-driven people are out of office. The best part is, you can vote them out. Isn't this country great? Just a little over 10 months until election time. ````````
RICK YONCE, Fomer Jonesboro City Councilman and Mayor Pro Tempore