Friday, April 30, 2010

Sales Tax Day on p. 4

We've got three bits on the sales-tax initiatives on the oped page today.

First the unnamed Courier editor performs some entertaining contortions in an attempt to protect his bona fides as a tax-hater while supporting a vote in favor.

Next Sen. Steve Pierce covers his own butt on whipping the ballot measure through the Senate, apparently most concerned that reactionaries will blame him for allowing them to vote. I don't understand why anyone pays attention to the know-nothings, but it demonstrates the kind of thinking our legislators are using to guide their actions in office. He's against the tax. I knew you'd be surprised. Tom Cantlon provides the smackdown in the comments without breaking a sweat.

Third, in the letters, Carl Tenney makes a plea from Chino Valley in favor of the tax.

Below all of these, most of the commenters are screaming in protest, citing all sorts of myths, misperceptions and irrelevant political irritations.

I gave my take on April 9, but here I just want to emphasize one point. If the sales tax doesn't pass, the Legislature will reduce funding to the counties for schools, corrections, health care and many other important functions. The counties will not be allowed to just drop those balls, people won't stand for it and doing so would only expand costs elsewhere. So they will require us to pay for most of the cuts, by adjusting property tax rates. In other words, if you vote against the sales tax, you're voting for higher property taxes instead. This vote is the legislative equivalent of an offer you can't refuse.

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