And There’s No End in Sight
If you are an Everett taxpayer, whether you own a single family home, a two family, a three family, a multifamily, an apartment house, a giant apartment house with many units, a commercial property, your tax bill is going up and up, like a balloon filled with helium released from your hand and rising higher and higher into the air.
When the balloon reaches heights it cannot be at, it deflates, or it could explode, or it is swept away by the wind and lost to eternity somewhere.
Taxes rising endlessly from year to year, inexorably going up and up are an issue not talked about – not a word by the mayor or the city’s Chief Financial Officer Eric Demas.
What the mayor and Demas talk about – and their voices were heard clearly at Monday evening’s council hearing – is that $4 million of the city’s precious free cash (your tax dollars) were offered up as a sacrifice to expenditures that are far outstripping the taxpayer’s ability to pay them.
The city council unanimously voted to transfer the $4 million to be put against the rising tax situation.
It was a bit like the city council tossing a gallon of water onto the sand in the middle of the Sahara Desert.
Neither the mayor, nor his CFO, nor the city council offered the economically sound advice and counsel for the taxpayers they presumably represent that maybe, just maybe, the city is spending too much money and must cut back a bit, the way the mayor and the CFO forced the School Department into a Draconian 100 person layoff last summer.
Tossing $4 million of the taxpayer’s money at a rising tax rate that will not be stopped until spending is brought in line with the city’s income is a doomed policy based on futility and lack of the basic understanding of economics.
Instead, taxpayers who listened in or watched on Everett Cable the proceedings Monday night, were informed by Demas that the tax situation is really, really good. The city is really, really solid financially because the tax levy can be raised to $136 million from the $110 million plateau because of rising values.
This is like someone with a credit card with a credit line of line of $36,000 being pleased with themselves because they only owe $10,000 at the moment can go to the maximum of $36,000.
The only problem with this thinking? The credit card debt is debt and debt must be paid back.
The credit card owner thinking he is well off because he hasn’t maxed out his credit card is a fool.
The city finds itself in the same situation – spending more and more and more every year, and then taxing its property owners to make up whatever the difference is.
It is a Ponzi scheme of sorts, a never ending spending spree paid for by the homeowners and business owners of this city.
Until and unless spending it cut, taxes are going to rise.
Until you hear Eric Demas informing the council that the city budget needs to be cut the way the school budget was cut last year, nothing will be saved, taxes will continue to soar, and the rules of basic economics will not be paid any heed in the city of Everett.