Dear Mr. Roach: I read your campaign flier with interest — I am mostly interested in what it does not address. You intend to “roll back the last property tax increase.” Typical campaign rhetoric — and totally without specifics. As Ward 7 candidate Tom Mitchell correctly noted during candidate assembly, when costs go up, you either pay more or buy less. Or in the city’s case, spend reserves.
If you roll back the tax levy increase (about $14 per $100,000 EAV), which city budget lines will you cut? Or do you propose using budget surplus? But when the reserves are gone, then what? Or instead are you going to cut what you think are mere “wants” or unnecessary expenses within the approved budget? That’s just it — we don’t know. Voters know the what, but neither the how nor where of your campaign rhetoric. Nor do you address the impact to city services of your rollback — do you really intend to rescind the first increase our library has requested in years?
That’s what bothers many of us voters. While your record does show your opposition to many but not all annual tax levy increases, you have never specified exactly which expenses or services you propose to cut — at least, not that I can find in the minutes of any committee or the council in the same time that you opposed the levies.
So which is it? Which of the city’s services and expenses do you propose we do without?
Charles Pitts, Lebanon