The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Letters to the Editor

November 6, 2012

Letters to the Editor 11/4/12



Quentin D. Anderson Sr.


Increase taxes only until need is met

Dear Editor:

In reference to Jean Cole’s Oct. 31 article, “Athens sales tax competes with surrounding cities, counties,” I’m not sure I can appreciate your point, Jean. Athens was competitive with lower taxes, now we are not competing.

Athens has absolutely no taxable relationship to Huntsville, Madison or Decatur, by choice we remain a bedroom community that will soon be surrounded by the aggressive and progressive Huntsville, Madison and Decatur. It’s too late folks; the annexation process is in favor of the big guy. Athens-Limestone County had a chance 15 years ago to form a metro government and fight annexation but chose to remain a bedroom community. I suggest we capitalize on that fact.

The real questions we should be asking are:

• Why taxes must always go up?

• Is there a limit to taxation?

• What is the proper role of government?

• What is the proper way to raise taxes?

I was alarmed at the modus not the mutandis. Decisions to tax must be clear and provide a period for review and comment by the public in order to prevent alarm. No, I am not a fan of a pure democracy and know difficult decisions are sometimes made against the majority of public opinion and taxation is the perfect example. In this case, the decisions to tax were just a bit sleazy and underhanded and exactly the kind of government we don’t need.

If money is needed for stuff, raise taxes for the term required to purchase that stuff. In other words, raise $4.3 million in a year for fire engines and police cars and put a termination date on tax increase. Raise taxes by 2 or 4 cents if necessary as long as the tax is necessary, proper and temporary.

I’m pleased the public got involved and fought City Hall. I think the public won.


Rex Davis


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