Your Opinion: Reject sales tax extension

Dear Editor:

The report on KRCG-TV had a video of the Jefferson City Chamber of Commerce president Randy Allen endorsing the sales tax increase on the ballot in the June 7 election.

That is sure a sweet deal for the Cole County Commission and the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce. Tax money goes to the Chamber and the Chamber supports the tax increase. Taxpayers of Cole County are, in effect, contributing to the campaign to increase sales taxes. The Cole County Commissioners have no shame in avoiding their fair share of taxes. If the construction projects were so important, property taxes should be increased to avoid the unfair and sneaky sales taxes.

The lower a person’s income, the higher the percentage of their income is paid in sales taxes. Commissioner Ellinger wants to avoid property taxes for himself and his rich friends in the Chamber. He was quoted in the News Tribune calling property taxes “obnoxious.”

He is very happy to pass his share to lower income people with sales taxes. Taking advantage of middle-class citizens and out-of-town shoppers demonstrates the ethically impaired supporters of Proposition A. The regressive and sneaky sales tax should be soundly rejected by the working people of Cole County.

If the new Cole County jail had been properly designed, perhaps it would not require twice the number of jailers as the old jail for the same number of prisoners. If the commission did not give money to the Chamber, maybe there would be more money available for county residents’ needs. The $4 million spent on the ambulance service compared to the $220,000 previously does not give me confidence to give the commission another $22 million dollars.

Why doesn’t the commission and city put a fairer property tax increase on the ballot? That way larger houses reflecting higher income would pay more taxes. I have heard both $22 and $28 million as the yield from the sneaky tax. Any unfair tax is too much.

Middle-income people should vote against the sales tax since it is an unfair tax. We should not vote to pay taxes out of proportion to our income while the wealthy do not pay their fair share. We should not allow elected officials to take advantage of us.

I hope to see many letters in the News Tribune on the sneaky tax increase. I would challenge Mike Bates to tell us how Prop. A is fair to all shoppers in Jefferson City.

I do not believe he can do it.

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com

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