Dave Wallace: Have we forgotten?
As communities throughout our country celebrated the Fourth of July, we think back on the Revolutionary War and the signing of the Declaration of Independence — or do we? Do we remember the conflict with Great Britain was over taxation? Do we remember thousands of patriots gave their lives to assure our liberty, or have we forgotten?
Beginning this month, the city sales tax has increased. It has gone from 2.25 percent to 4 percent. The 1.75-percent addition is a 77-percent increase. The justification for this tremendous increase, as presented by the city, was necessary to maintain city services. Without the increase, snow plowing would be minimal, street sweeping would be nonexistent and the swimming pool would likely be shut down. This was a very dismal image, and many city residents fell for it. This is what designed and directed propaganda does. Now, let’s look at some spending so far this year.
• $300,000.00 in consulting fees.
• $600,000.00 for additional and replaced equipment.
Is this actually maintaining city services, or are these items being plucked from a wish list? Was the 1.75-percent increase really necessary, or have we handed the city administrators the keys to the candy store?
Backing up to the spring ballot measure of 2017, a sales tax increase request of 1.25 percent was rejected, so why was the increase of 1.75 percent passed in November?
There are a couple of reasons, one, a number of community residents voted in favor because of their children — the threat of shutting down the pool complex and the demolition of the bike park hit home. Secondly, the tax exemption when buying an automobile or recreational vehicle enticed even more residents. Let us focus on the exemptions which led to the 0.5-percent portion of the increase. This percentage was based on the revenue loss related to the exemptions. City Council member Chris Nichols mentioned at one of the city council meetings that the community of Silverthorne had exempted its automobile sales to generate competition. This is true, though Mr. Nichols left out a very important piece of information: Silverthorne did not increase its sales tax to make up the difference, which Craig did.
Of the registered voters in Moffat County, Republicans outnumber Democrats five to one, yet the election results of 2017 do not reflect that. Basic conservative beliefs are personal responsibility, limited government and individual liberties, while the liberal party supports greater government, with equal opportunity, and equality for all. Relinquishing your rights under the “Colorado taxpayers’ Bill of Rights” is not part of the conservative ideology.
Business exemptions put in place to improve competiveness are great, and I have no issues with that whatsoever. My concern lies with the additional sales tax that covers the shortfall. This exemption, which some individuals will find beneficial as they seek relief from heavy taxation, will burden the majority of residents who are forced to make up the difference.
Even though the philosophy of relieving the burden of one and distributing it among the populace is supported by a political party within our country, I can assure you, it is not part of the conservative party’s principles; it is even further to the left than most liberals support.
Ladies and gentlemen, this conceptualization lies within the Socialist Party’s ideology. While many voters claim loyalty to the political party with which they are affiliated, their true colors will always be found within the election results. In 1783, the war for independence and liberty was won; today, sad as it is, we are giving it back.