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Archive for Saturday, February 23, 2002

Enough taxes

February 23, 2002

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We get a tax increase every year. Since taxes are percentage-based, every time you get a raise you pay more taxes. Every year you pay more property taxes. Every time gas goes up you pay more taxes.

So, you don't believe we pay much tax? Here is an approximate tax situation for a family with an income of $50,000. These are low estimates. Your actual taxes paid are probably much higher.

Earnings: $50,000

Taxes: Income tax, $5,558; payroll tax, $3,875; state tax, $1,290, local property tax, $3,500 ($125,000 house); sales tax on $30,000 spending, $2,076; fuel tax, $168, auto registration average $400; Remaining balance, $33,133.

So, the government taking 33 percent of every dollar you earn is not enough? It is for me, especially when I see all the waste and lack of service that takes place in our state government.

What did the state government want to do with our money this past year?

 Buy a new plane for the governor.

 Build a $10 million tunnel so the KDOT director wouldn't get wet when walking to the governor's office.

 Buy more full-sized pickups for the single drivers who use them to sit and watch construction.

 Not collect unpaid taxes, consolidate offices or outsource services.

 Build a $10 million parking garage.

 Not implement zero-based budgeting.

How about the fact that Kansas does not require reappraisals for tax increases? They just increase your property taxes based on home sales.

But we need more money for schools. Sure we do. With the federal dollars added in, we spend more than $7,000 per student in K-12 schools. Some private universities operate on less money than that. The problem is that we are too administration-heavy. Jefferson County has six school districts with six administrative offices for a county of 19,000 people. We wonder why there isn't more money for teachers.

I am sick of hearing that we need a tax increase. I, for one, want to keep my money and use it to start a business that will employ people and bring tourists to my neighborhood, not give it too the government.

Dan Ward,

Oskaloosa

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