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Letter to the Editor: Tax disagreement

— To the editor:

I would like to express my disagreement with the council’s proposal doubling gasoline taxes, which is totally out of the question, in order to pay for a backlog of road repairs and setting up for future road maintenance.

Local taxpayers are not the only users of our roads. It seems the council’s only answer to solve various project issues is to raise taxes instead of exploring other options. I believe a recent gas tax was imposed for a project I cannot recall. Where did that money go?

If memory serves me, I believe the original urban renewal monies were earmarked for the city’s infrastructure, namely water, sewer and roads, as a top priority. Using urban renewal monies spent on a risky Rapoza development project, I might add, has increased in cost from inception, could have been better spent on backlog road repairs and would better serve our taxpayers’ dollars.

We should already have a preventative maintenance schedule plan in place. That is what our responsible department head managers’ position is all about. They should observe and document problems and assess dollar values for repair or replacement in their area of expertise and report their findings to the council for budgeting.

Taxpayers’ money should be spent on health and sanitation or road issues as a top priority, where the general public can benefit as a whole. We are not in a position to spend money unwisely.

Proper planning to gradually increase rates over years would be more prudent without adding any pork barrel projects to the increasing, and I might add, inflated city budget. I would hope the council re-evaluates its position on funding for these needed road repairs.

If the city council still insists on raising taxes to pay for various projects without exploring other options, then Nolan Young and company need to move on to broader horizons where raising taxes is not part of the equation.

Richard Hess

The Dalles


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