Archive for Thursday, August 23, 2007

Streets costs

August 23, 2007


To the editor:

Why do the residents of Lawrence have the cost burden for repairs to the streets and public facilities, by themselves, as taxpayers? A very large number of college students bear none of the cost.

I propose a city car sticker (say $25 per year) for all residents, permanent and temporary, whose cars travel our city streets. This money can be used for upkeep of our streets and public facilities.

I know this will be viewed as a hot potato in some areas, but the homeowner cannot alone support the cost though tax increases. Let everyone who lives and enjoys Lawrence share the cost.

Deborah Hercha,



Ragingbear 10 years, 10 months ago

If I end up with this stupid sticker now, I am sending the bill to Deborah herself. It's a stupid idea and makes no sense.

fletch 10 years, 10 months ago

"Why do the residents of Lawrence have the cost burden for repairs to the streets and public facilities, by themselves, as taxpayers?"

They don't. They are bolstered by revenue from the sales tax, hotel tax, etc that KU student, families, and visitors bring into the community. But hey, thanks for playing.

Alia Ahmed 10 years, 10 months ago

As a person who rents, I resent the implication that if you don't own your home, then you don't pay property taxes. I'm sure my landlord factors in the cost of property taxes when my rent is calculated. Homeowners get the the tax benefit of deducting mortgage interest if they still have a mortgage. It seems insincere to portray themselves as victims carrying all of the tax burden. Everyone pays sales tax which is the most regressive tax there is. As former KU student and a current KU employee, I am aware how much revenue KU students bring into this community.

tolawdjk 10 years, 10 months ago


Ah, but the city already had the system set in place whereby the homeowner is responsible for the sidewalk infront of their property. They have already put that toll booth up. The city has no improvements upon the airspace above Lawrence, so a tax there for street improvement really wouldn't be possible. Then, how do you enforce it? CIty owned fighter jets? Anti-aircraft enplacements ontop of city hall?

The city says they need more money for roads. It's well known that it doesn't really matter which color is in power...either side isn't going to cut a pet project to scare up the money for something like the only way to find that money is in your and my bank account.

A "city sticker" really isn't that unheard of, several communities use them. Rather than a flat rate, I would set it up based on vehicle weight as it truely is vehicle weight that puts the most wear and tear on roads...especially roads that were built piss poorly in the first place. I would also require that this city sticker fee be gathered by KU at the time that they issue KU parking passes. No college student is going to take the time to go downtown and pay $20 for a city fee if they think they can get away with it.

oldvet 10 years, 10 months ago

The idea of taxing users with the auto sticker is a good idea but would be difficult to enforce widely. Many student vehicles are not registered in DG county, or even in KS, thus how would the fee be collected? Yes, property taxes on rental properties are eventually rolled into rental rates, thus renters actually do pay a share. But the KU dorms are full of people and their cars fill the parking lots, yet no tax revenues are collected there. Nor do those who commute to KU pay any tax other than sales taxes they might pay on local purchases. This is the reason I support a sales tax increase rather than property tax increase... every resident, permanent or temporary, students, as well as transient people who either visit or stop while passing through, will contribute to the upkeep of the city and county services they are using or have available to them.

imastinker 10 years, 10 months ago

Isn't that what the gas tax goes to pay? Besides, Lawrence benefits a lot from the University. This would just be a dead town otherwise.

Bradley Kemp 10 years, 10 months ago

I think there should be a city income tax.

KS 10 years, 10 months ago

Oh yeah! A city income tax. Johhson County, Kansas has KCMO to thank for that. JoCo has had tremendous growth, in part, due to the KCMO earnings tax (1% of your gross earnings - or at least it used to be), whether you live there or not. I say let's just stick it to the rich and the businesses. They have all the money anyway. Besides, they should not be able to keep their money when there are so many people out there to share it with that don't have any. It's just money, money, money, money. When it runs out, we can just print some more. Isn't that what Lawrence is all about? Who cares? Stop the waste! It would cost more to police a $25 sticker program than what the income would be to offset it. What a stupid idea. Sorry Deborah!

homechanger 10 years, 10 months ago

Dumbest letter of the month. All renters pay their landlords share of property tax. Deb is just ignorant. should out of town visitors obtain a temporary right to drive sticker when entering lawrence?

LogicMan 10 years, 10 months ago

"I think there should be a city income tax."

"Johhson County, Kansas has KCMO to thank for that. JoCo has had tremendous growth, in part, due to the KCMO earnings tax"

Yep. The most popular saying after enacting such a new tax: "Would the last one out of Lawrence (for the unincorporated county, etc.) please turn out the lights!"

ralphralph 10 years, 10 months ago

A city sticker would disproportionately affect the poor ... minorities ... single mothers. What's next? A city tax on Government Cheese? This idea is fraught with hatred. Let's make the pickets and get out there.

blessed3x 10 years, 10 months ago

I like this idea. Only the people using a service pay for it. Can we implement this across the board so us low-brows can stop paying for the crappy artwork downtown? Maybe we can charge the emp"T"y riders not only enough to cover the cost of the service without tax subsidies but also charge an additional amount to cover the fact that those buses do far more damage to the streets and the environment than my economy car. Can I bow out of tax payments to the National Endowment for the Arts? Wow! I bet I could cut my taxes by 80-90% if I didn't have to pay for all the crap I don't use.

I love it! Fire it up!

paavopetie 10 years, 10 months ago

How about requiring a certain color parking pass to park in your neighborhood? I know Manhattan has those right off the K-State campus. It's really to prevent people living out in town from parking for free on the city streets and leaving the people who actually live there without any street parking. But I agree with KS that it would probably cost more to enforce this sticker than the money generated from selling it.

The only option I see viable is to raise the tax on gas. We pay about 5 to 7 cents in Lawrence than what it costs in Lenexa where I work. I'd be willing to pay this if it meant the roads in Lawrence were better.

And I honestly can't believe Lawrence has been given Bike City honors when the roads are in such horrible shape. 19th St from Mass St to Naismith is completely horrendous.

Confrontation 10 years, 10 months ago

If Deborah wants a sticker so bad, then may I suggest one of the following for her vehicle?:

My Village Called, and They Want Their Idiot Back

My Child May Be an Honor Student, But I Wasn't

I'm Gonna Miss Me When I'm Gone



waydownsouth 10 years, 10 months ago

blue73harley and Confrontation i love your humor on this one. I'm still laughing.

Richard Heckler 10 years, 10 months ago

KU and Lawrence benefit from each other. We know education has made plenty of dough for Lawrence and the city has provided a unique environment for students to hang out and enjoy. They are working for each other.

Why not expand on the education industry to further economic growth instead of housing and retail? As I said a known factor is education works.

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