Your Opinion: Increased taxes not path to prosperity
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Deeply profound statements are rare. In 50 years of listening one was by a state legislator over 25 years ago. He stated that one of the worst legislation passed was to permit local sales taxes.
A city or county can pass taxes on taxpayers living outside the city or county. Taxation without representation is not the American way.
The state legislator’s statement is much more profound now. Walmart, Lowes, Menards and other shopping giants have concentrated shopping in regional shopping areas.
Sales taxes are insidious taxes. An annual summary is not available of how much you pay as with property taxes and income taxes. Most families, especially low income households, pay more in sales taxes than all other taxes combined.
Jefferson City faces economic problems as a result of a shrinking government work force. Taxing yourself and others may not be the path to prosperity.
As a resident of Moniteau County I have no desire for multi-million dollar animal shelters, bike paths, or a guided tour of an abandoned state prison. A partially financed convention center is a gamble. I would enjoy paved county roads, low school taxes, and lower property taxes supported by someone else paying part of the bill.
I commend the chamber and the mayor for this time not campaigning on the fact that a large part of the tax will be paid by taxpayers outside of the city.
Poplar Bluff, Kirksvile, Macon, Hannibal and others have shared a local sales tax to help pay for divided highways promoting their regional area. Jefferson City has not pursued this approach.
The impact of local sales taxes resulted in a wake-up call several years ago when building a home. I stopped buying at Great Central and other Jefferson City home building suppliers.
Since just a few votes are necessary to pass the additional sales taxes Jefferson City will be celebrating the fourth sales tax increase in a year. Extensions of sales and lodging taxes are increases.
In all of the surrounding counties most of our shopping needs can be served locally. The few dollars saved or minor convenience by shopping out-of-state owned centers in Jefferson City is not offset by shopping locally to create local jobs, decrease property taxes and reduce fuel cost. Passage of the transformation sales tax will be a unique rallying opportunity for area cities to begin effective campaign to shopping locally.