To the Readers' Forum:
I am writing in regard to the article in The Post-Journal on 3/18/12 about County Executive Greg Edwards' request to our state representative for a increase in the sales tax in light of the anticipated $13 million to $14 million deficit for the county budget in 2013.
The county also faces the possibility of losing the tax revenues received from NRG. So how do we close the gap?
Some local and state politicians are against raising the sales tax rate. They state they want to lower taxes and expand the tax base. Sounds good, but what has been the results of these platitudes over the past 50 years? An ever increasing tax rate and the exodus of businesses to other states or countries.
New York state is the only state in the country that requires the counties to pay a share of the states Medicaid costs. And the Medicaid increases in NY are out of control. Yet the politicians continue to provide the "Cadillac" version of benefits. California has twice the amount of people on Medicaid, but NY pays four times the amount for benefits. What does this tell you about the NYS government?
So what do we do? The citizens of New York do not want to have the services provided by the state cut which means that to cut programs and personnel is not realistic. That means we have to increase revenues. If the politicians will not increase the sales tax, that means we will need a huge increase on the people who pay property taxes.
The people who do not own property will not pay any increase in taxes. Is that an example of everyone paying their "fair share" as our president wants us to? I dont think so!
Why shouldn't everyone pay one or two cents per dollar more, instead of the property owners paying hundreds more each year. After all, the people receiving cash assistance, and others who are eligible for the earned (misnomer) income tax credit pay nothing in taxes, or get back hundreds more that they paid into the system.
Enough is enough!