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  #1  
Old 11-19-2003, 02:34 PM
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Do your local governments steal from you?

There was a time when government services where there to aid the needs of the population. Now their goal, at least in Seattle, is to hire folks time and again to do work no one asks for and justify their efforts by saying their efforts creates jobs and benefits the populace. While there is an element of truth to this, the tax payer always gets the unwanted and often expressly not approved bills for this approach. The question, is does this happen everywhere?
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  #2  
Old 11-19-2003, 04:54 PM
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Our little community if full of very apathetic voters (last referendum vote was a near no-show).

So it's no surprise that we pay some of the highest property taxes in the area and have sales taxes that exceed downtown NY!

In the meantime, the local board has approved (thanks in part to the lack of voter participation) another tax hike to support street maintenance, which should be covered under basic municipal funds!
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  #3  
Old 11-19-2003, 04:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by G-Benz
Our little community if full of very apathetic voters (last referendum vote was a near no-show).

So it's no surprise that we pay some of the highest property taxes in the area and have sales taxes that exceed downtown NY!

In the meantime, the local board has approved (thanks in part to the lack of voter participation) another tax hike to support street maintenance, which should be covered under basic municipal funds!
Yeah, but you Texans don't pay state income tax, either. My sympathy well is dry.
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Old 11-19-2003, 05:04 PM
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Originally posted by Botnst
Yeah, but you Texans don't pay state income tax, either. My sympathy well is dry.
We aren't the only state with no state income tax...and the other states seem to be able to do this without such concessions!
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  #5  
Old 11-19-2003, 05:32 PM
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I remember one city that had a "rain tax", there was an equation that calculated the amount of quarterly rainfall and the square footage of improved property including parking. Needless to say it didn't make it far in court.
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  #6  
Old 11-19-2003, 06:01 PM
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Our local govt. is pretty lean. In fact, it's so lean that the Feds have decided that we don't need money to operate. Minnesota gets $0.78 for every federal tax dollar paid. Every southern state except for Texas and Florida had a positive return on their federal tax dollars. Florida broke even, Texas lost $0.04. New Mexico did the best, making a whopping $2.34 for each dollar invested in the federal government. It's gotta be the UFO's.
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Old 11-19-2003, 08:06 PM
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Originally posted by narwhal
And it still doesn't make up for the rotten carpetbaggers who pillaged our carcassas and defiled our women after the war of northern agression.
OIC, we're paying reparations!

Q: What's better than being deep in the heart of Texas?
A: Six inches into Virginia.
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  #8  
Old 11-19-2003, 08:27 PM
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Do your local governments steal from you?
...ya'll might want to take a look at how much/little some of your local corporate institutions pay in taxes relative to the good private citizens of your local municipality. I think you'll find that the many are living on the 'dole', receiving massive amounts of corporate welfare, and leaving ya'll to foot the bill. Who is stealing from whom?

Local governments quite often are the first and last lines of defense that keep your communities liveable and worthwhile places to invest. Just because you personally don't perceive the value of the services provided by government, doesn't mean those services aren't of intrinsic value to your community.
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  #9  
Old 11-19-2003, 10:13 PM
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i thought communists liked welfare?
...I take the Libertarian line on Corporate welfare. Let private commercial entities sink or swim based on the merits of their products, services and general business acumen.
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as the head of my own little corporation that is within the city limits of a large metropolitan area, i don't experience this.
I used to be the co-owner of my own little corporation, and I didn't experience this either...that's part of the point I'm trying to make. Larger corporations get all sorts of perks and special wink-wink-nudge-nudge deals that the little guys, and average citizens don't.
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do you have an example?
...there are literally thousands of examples of this--in the Seattle area, Boeing is currently extorting the state of Washington and King County in order to get massive tax breaks and other corporate welfare schemes.

I don't remember the details, but the State of Alabama offered MB millions in corporate welfare benefits so that they'd locate their plant down there. I seem to remember that the deal amounted to something like $200,000 per job...do mom n' pop outfits get that kind of treatment? Walmart gets all sorts of land use and tax welfare benefits so they can move in and displace local businesses--I could go on...
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  #10  
Old 11-20-2003, 12:04 AM
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G-Benz, Does your local gov start projects even though the voters say no?

Botnst: why does lack of state income tax alter your respect of the will of the people?

300SDLLLL: it sounds as if Houston follows a similar path of Seattle: here, as is commonly the case the (fill in the blank) gov branch will pass a bill and start collecting taxes, often without a public vote and well ahead of the time it takes for the courts to decide the legality of the gov branchís actions. As often as not the court finds the actions illegal but even that doesnít necessarily stop the tax collection. Or necessarily start a refund.

MedMech: in Seattle we have a surface water tax thatís supposed to pay for the costs of removing water. Naturally the city wont deal with this problem in residential areas unless forced.

Z: your comment that the gov also steals by offering incentives to bigger employers than it does to small business is interesting. Iíve thought the volume discount the gov offered to big employers was more than a fair trade for pumping potentially 10s of millions in wages into the economy, as does boeing, but you point out it only changes by degrees the nature of theft Ė corporate welfare.

BTW, is what Boeing doing really extortion or merely the effects of open competition?
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  #11  
Old 11-20-2003, 12:43 AM
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They have every right to complain. Every taxpayer does. But Texas has just about the most benign state government.

I wish my state (and national gov) would follow that lead.
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  #12  
Old 11-20-2003, 01:56 AM
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They have every right to complain. Every taxpayer does. But Texas has just about the most benign state government. I wish my state (and national gov) would follow that lead.
...uh, are you suggesting Texas as a national model Botnst? Hasn't the national gu'mnt been Tex-ified enough already?

I ain't 'messin with Texas' (I've lived there), but I don't think it should be a national model...hell, my home state (Washington) would be a mighty poor national model--especially cuz we don't have an income tax. We have THE most regressive tax structure in the nation.
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  #13  
Old 11-20-2003, 11:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by 300SDLLLL
Illegal or not, this drainage fee is one step of a three-step system to refinance parts of the public works system so that it can tackle drainage problems. I'm all for it. If it rains three inches in this town there is a flood somewhere, and anything more than that and the problem becomes very widespread. People are tired of having water come into their homes and flood their cars and their businesses.
While I know naught about texas taxas, are you suggesting it's okay for the gov to do whatever they will, as long as at least someone thinks it's in the best interest of the public? Seems a thin and convenient justificaton for theft..... Hey, gime $500 to channel water off *my* property
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  #14  
Old 11-20-2003, 02:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Zeitgeist
Larger corporations get all sorts of perks and special wink-wink-nudge-nudge deals that the little guys, and average citizens don't.
For example, Osceola county has the poorest school district in Florida because that giant theme park with the mouse doesn't pay any local property taxes.
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  #15  
Old 11-20-2003, 03:05 PM
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You mentioned municipalities. So you don't have an example?
Well, the local municipal water treatment agency in my hometown (Olympia, WA) recently went through a very contentious wrangling with the Miller Brewing Co. over sewer rates. Miller purchased the old Olympia Brewery and the grandfathered 50% rates for sewage dumped into the system. Those grandfathered rates expired in 2000, and thus were up for re-negotiation. It only seems fair that the largest producer of waste in the community pay at least the same rates as others--right? Wrong! Miller threatened to close down the plant if the community didn't rollover and re-up those sweetheart rates.

Long story short--they eventually co-opted the city council and got their extorted 50% sewer rates on a 5-4 vote. Oh, ya, they also got between $8-12 million in back debt owed to the community wiped clean in the process.

They closed down the plant earlier this year....

Do businesses exist to serve the community, or is it the other way around?
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