Mt. Vernon Register-News

Opinion

November 19, 2013

We are fed up

Many of your readers may remember the television sitcom of the 1970s called “Welcome Back Kotter.” The show takes place in a fictional remedial classroom in a Brooklyn, N.Y., high school. The students of the class called themselves the “Sweathogs.” One oddball but lovable character of the cast was named Arnold Horshack. Arnold would often hang his head out the building window and shout that “we are fed up with this and we are not going to take it any longer.”

Like Arnold, the taxpayers of Jefferson County are telling their elected representatives on public boards they are fed up with this. They are fed up with all the excess taxing and spending by the city, county and some school districts. They are frustrated and angered. They perceive many public officials have an attitude that thinks the only way to solve a problem is to throw more money at it though increased taxation.

The Mt. Vernon City Schools District 80 officials exemplified this attitude when they recently announced they will be seeking an 8 percent increase in property taxes for next year. One board member stated that, “we need to get every possible dime we can.”

His mindset is typical of many board members. Rather than saying, “we need to get all we can,” he and fellow board members should focus on doing better with what they receive. Remember, they recently stood up and stated the reason for a deficit budget was the result of a project that was over budget and not finished on time. Should taxpayers be asked to pay for this?

The Jefferson County Board is another example of this attitude. Some board members state they have no public position on invoking a new sales tax for the renovation of the courthouse. Yet, they send out other board members in townhall meetings to sell the idea and need for an increased sales tax to renovate the facility — somehow that does not seem plausible.

Text Only
Opinion
  • Take a lesson from Texas I like to eat at blue-collar diners and cafes, particularly when I’m on vacation.It’s a chance to step beyond the homogenized national chains and experience a bit of local flavor.And being a reporter, I like to chat up local folks to find out a bit a

    July 23, 2014

  • The future reality of terrorist drones A very small airplane rose over the Gaza Strip last week. It entered Israeli airspace and sped toward the coastal city of Ashdod. Then a Patriot missile blew it up.The plane, a rudimentary drone launched by the terrorist group Hamas, posed little thr

    July 23, 2014

  • We are headed to a jobless future In an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers revived a debate I’d had with futurist Ray Kurzweil in 2012 about the jobless future.He echoed the words of Peter Diamandis, who says that we are moving from a history

    July 23, 2014

  • Pensions need to be addressed I will have to admit that I am slightly overwhelmed today with the receipt of articles and suggestions for a column. One of my Fitness Mafia colleagues constantly tells me the columns are too long and trying to address different subjects just dilutes

    July 22, 2014

  • VA still failing our vets Jymm’s preferred attire is a skin-tight Minnie Mouse T-shirt with bright pink windbreaker pants. Even when not sporting his choice outfit, he dons short shorts and shirts with holes in them, because that’s what he finds most comfortable. His Santa Mo

    July 22, 2014

  • Feed your home piggy bank with a 15-year mortgage This summer, we finally decided to take the plunge we’d been contemplating for a while: converting our 30-year mortgage to one with a 15-year payoff. It’s a big step. Our payments will go up somewhat (the PITI — principal, interest, tax, and insuranc

    July 19, 2014

  • Under the dumb There is a TV series about an entire town trapped under a giant, mysterious crystal-clear dome that appears out of the blue one day. The dome is impenetrable; no one can get in, no one can get out. Who made the dome? Aliens? God? A super-secret branc

    July 19, 2014

  • Widening the loopholes This week, two more U.S. companies moved to reestablish themselves overseas, allowing them to pursue lower corporate tax rates. They will join dozens of others who have chased lower tax bills abroad while maintaining operations in the United States,

    July 19, 2014

  • Patriotism not questioned Editor:I am responding to Mayor Mary Jane Chesley’s Reader’s View article in the Thursday, June 19, 2014, Register-News “Patriotism is strong.”The mayor has missed the point of my Reader’s View/opinion article in the local newspapers regarding Flag D

    July 19, 2014

  • Who's telling a story now? For this administration, failure is always the result of a “communications” problem. Otherwise, failure might be taken as evidence of misguided ideology and incompetent execution, right? It’s a weird excuse for the president who fancies himself to be

    July 18, 2014

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks