Letter to the editor: Reader advocates to vote ‘no’ on city referendum
The city’s revenue override referendum is asking people to tax themselves. In this case, since the average home is valued at $136,475, that additional tax would average $136.48 per year for five years, a total of $682.40. A case would clearly have to be made that all citizens would benefit from paying that additional tax, not just the residents that live on the secondary streets to be repaired. Essentially, if you are not one of the “chosen,” you would be paying $682.40 for repairing someone else’s street.
A revenue override referendum needs to first establish that the governing body has been fiscally prudent in the past. Second Street did not need to be repaired and/or replaced. The businesses on Second Street did not want their 3-year-old street to be replaced. The common council just wanted it to look prettier. That money could have been used to repair a street that needed it. Our city hall, sold for $500,000, is to be replaced by another building at an estimated total cost of $3.3 million. The common council wanted a new city hall, and that $2.8 million could have been used to repair streets that needed it.
The common council has already spent $400,000 on a proposed new park to be located between Second Street and Third Street, three blocks from Columbia Park. We already have 16 parks in this city, one for every 1,200 residents. Rather than spend that money on an additional park that the common council wants, the money should have been spent on streets that need to be repaired. Wouldn’t it have been nice to see the proposed park property added to the tax base rather than creating another park we do not need?
I believe in the Mick Jagger school of economics, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try some time, you just might find you get what you need.” Please vote no on Aug. 9. Let us stop feeding the beast.
John Adam Kruse