To the editor:
It always amazes me that anytime a politician, or an administrator or administrative body, has a situation involving revenue verses expenditures that the answer to the problem is always increasing taxes, tax levies, and requiring the people of the community to pay more.
Whatever happened to reduction in expenses – elimination of some expenses, administrative, labor, operating, and other expenses that just go on being paid?
The same could be asked of school districts. Do we need all the expense relating to payroll and benefits. Do we really need all the numbers?
As a business owner and head of household over the last several years, like many other people in the position of not being able to tax and keep spending, we have found it critical to decrease expenditures. If you ran the city and other non-private-sector operations like a business we would all be better off.
As for the statement made by City Administrator Bob Knabel, Newton being the preferred community to live in Central Iowa, why not make Newton the place to live by having the lowest property taxes in the five-county area surrounding the Des Moines Metropolitan Area?
We have a great education system, great housing availability, easy access to transportation and a small-community atmosphere. Make the incentive also to move here by having the lowest property tax rates in the area.
This will benefit all aspects of Newton – increasing the number of children in the school district, the number of people in the retail sector, the number of people in need of single-family dwellings, the stabilization of property prices, etc.
Over time, the sacrifices that need to be made to accomplish this will make them worthwhile. It is far better than raising property taxes, fees, tax levies, etc. and better than doing nothing at all.
Editor’s note: The City Council packet for the Monday, Feb. 4, regular meeting includes information that councilors intend to do away with a proposed 27-cent “emergency levy” tax increase to pay for portions of the city’s Comprehensive Plan. Taxes will still increase, but mainly as a result of a state-mandated decrease in the residential/agricultural property tax “rollback.”