Last month, I submitted a letter to the NT correcting some misstatements made in several previously published letters on the subject of Transformation.
A few days later, a rebuttal by Ed Williams was printed, not to debate the facts I presented, but to accuse me personally of having self-serving motives. I don't personally know Williams, but I do know one thing about him - he doesn't know me!
My letter had two objectives: to set the record straight regarding factual errors and to urge support of the Transform Jeff City program.
Williams took the occasion of my response to personally and publicly denigrate me and used more false information to do so. Do you want to know my real motivation? I want Jefferson City to be a better place to live and work for all. Period!
Williams says sales taxes are "regressive." Is he suggesting that all sales taxes be abolished? If so, are you prepared to give up road maintenance, police and fire protection and other city services? Or is he only opposed to this effort? A small, temporary increase aimed at getting our community to grow and prosper for years to come?
Perhaps he should ask someone looking for work if they would prefer a 7.725 percent local tax rate and remain jobless or an 8.225 percent rate (not the 10 percent his letter stated) and be gainfully employed?
Why not property taxes? The state of Missouri, in 2005, approved a "Local Option Economic Development Sales Tax" to "help create high quality, family supporting jobs, (and to) stimulate private investment."
Why hold the election in February? Simple - it was the first available date after the work of the Action Teams was completed. Isn't it fortunate that we can focus on the merits of this issue and not have it lost among the clutter of a lengthy ballot?
Frankly, I would join Williams in opposing a new tax simply to bolster government coffers. But that is not the situation here. The Transform Jeff City initiative is an investment in Jefferson City by those who live and work in Jefferson City.
It funds specific projects that were proposed, scrutinized and approved by hundreds of local, civic minded individuals, not the Chamber of Commerce.
Please join me and thousands of others by voting yes on Proposition 1 on Feb. 7.