Since when does a ‘Community’ mean taxing your neighbor to pay for your pool, golf and exercise gym pass?
Over the past several years, we have heard from some citizens trying to justify taxing their neighbors to pay for their wants or Amenities. They say…..
1. “Government providing these services are what makes a community.”
2. “The majority (or the minority who show up to vote) voted to tax and provide these services, so that means the majority wants them and we have to live with it. ”
3. “These services benefit all, even those who don’t use them, so we all must share the burden.”
4. “If our city doesn’t provide these services, people will not move here or they will shop in other cities instead.”
Let’s really break this down and get the discussion moving.
Here are most of the services currently under our CITY government control. These services are paid for by taxes, user fees or both...
A: Government roads, water, sewer, garbage, police, fire, court, administration,
B: City and school libraries, public/charter schools, and senior citizen center.
C: Government swimming pool, golf course, rec center (exercise gym), recreation programs, city parks, lions club, arts department (theater, music, etc),
I am sure I am missing a few things, but let’s just talk about what I have here.
Governments have many services that could fall under the proper role of government like in section A, the ESSENTIALS, because just about all citizens use these every day.
Section C is the WANTS or AMENITIES, as some refer to them. Citizens may use or not use, but all must pay either way. Some use the pool, others don’t. Some play in the park, others never set foot in them. Some exercise at the rec center, others have their own home gym or go to a private gym.
We have other areas like section B that might be necessary to some at certain times, but not all citizens use these services. Some attend home or private school’s some go to the public school. The younger citizens don’t use the senior citizen center.
We can see that taxes can be attached to section A, but how can we justify taxes to be used for section C? Shouldn’t section C be all user fee? Should we even have section C under government control? What about section B, would this be more equal and fair if we had these attached to a user fee?
While you’re thinking, let’s break down the statements we hear a lot lately.
Let’s take #1: “Government providing these services is what makes a community.” A government service makes a community? Are we a community right now with what is in government hands? If the majority show up and vote for more to be put into government hands, are we still a community? What services are allowed under the ‘community”? If you mean those already under our city government, A, B, and C.. does it stop there?
What about #2: “The majority (or the minority who show up to vote) voted to tax and provide certain services, so that means the majority wants them and we have to live with it. ”
What if the majority is allowed to vote to open a PG City fast food store and a PG City grocery store, both operating under city government regulation? The citizens who shop there pay two ways, a customer user fee and a tax subsidy to fill in where the user fees don’t cover. Those who choose NOT to shop at the government stores but stick with their choice of free market stores, are still forced to pay the tax subsidy…is that ok with you?
What if the majority votes to start a PG City gas station, car lot, car repair, or city bank ? Is it still ok with you that you are taxed for services or businesses you don’t use because the majority showed up to vote?
So where is the line drawn on what the majority can vote to tax the people for?
Let’s talk about #3: “These services benefit everyone, even those who don’t use them, so we all must share the burden.”
Says who? Can a person or a ‘majority’ tell someone what a benefit is to them?
Each individual gets to decide what a benefit or a burden is to them. No one has the right to decide for someone else. What is a benefit to one person, can be burden to another.
Finish with #4: “If our city doesn’t provide these services, people will not move here or they will shop in other cities instead.”
Prove it. Do we know what every person thinks and feels? Some people move here for the mountains, others for the neighborhood. Some because of the distance between work and home, or to be closer to family, or a certain school. People move here or shop in others cities for so many different reasons no one can pin point the data for 100% proof on anything.
I personally have never heard of anyone saying they are moving to PG City because they have a government pool.
Since we can’t prove this and people do things for their own million different reasons, it’s just not true.
Writing this is to get people to start a discussion and to look at things they see each day in a different light.
The Constitution and our Founding Fathers gave us the line in the sand. They have set up principles of what can go into governments hands in the first place and how much. America is suppose to be a Constitutional Republic form of government, but what we live under today in our city, state and country is far from what we were given.
How can we make sure that government treats all citizens equal under the law?
If we keep doing what we have been doing, how long before all services and goods are under the governments hands and we are living in full Socialism paying most of our paychecks to taxes with very little private property. Or worse, living under Communism with everything under government control and no private property at all?
It's voting time again......Where is the line in the sand for you?
PGVoices for responsible government following Constitutional principles. True Conservatives who stand for private property rights, limited government and a free market economy. This blog will be a combined effort to give you easy to understand researched local government information.