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Opinion

Bath couple shares thoughts on tax increase

6/12/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Letter to the Editor

To the editor:

It is encouraging that Summit County Council has the courage and wisdom to ask the question if yet another tax increase is justified. Many times, big government politicians just ram a new tax down our throats.

Regarding the proposed tax increase, we do not believe that raising the sales tax is appropriate. There are ways and means to make government work without being a burden for we taxpayers. For example, most working stiffs have not had a raise since 2009. Why should public servants? Many of us have experienced times when we actually had our salaries cut to help balance the books ... why not do the same for public servants? Many of us have lost jobs as the economy continues to shrink.

More importantly, why not refocus the actions of county government to three areas: public safety, public benefit, public economic growth.

If a department, group, function, action or mission cannot be tied back to public safety, benefit or economic growth and resonate that overarching mission, then it should not be funded. It is not the role of government to become a charity ... or in anyway encourage people to continuously suck off the teat of government.

With regard to surplus budgets, when is the last time that any [money] is returned to the General Fund? Why is it that budget administrators manage to spend every penny allocated to them? Why do they encourage their staffs to “use it or lose it”? This is a no-win mentality that needs to change.

On the positive side of a sales tax increase; it is a use tax and, thus, the taxpayer has some choice to participate or not. Many times we would travel to Stark, Wayne or Lorain counties in the past to make large purchases because the county tax was less enough to get a better deal. Today, the difference is only .25 percent or 25 basis points … hardly worth the drive.

However, the usurious and onerous Cuyahoga County tax rate at 8 percent is out of control and only serves to fatten the wallets of administrators ... not serve the public.

We do not believe that raising this new tax is appropriate.

Well — those are our thoughts. Thank you for asking. God bless.

Richard and Constance Bradner, Bath

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