It was with much interest that I read the article on the Belleville school board being the 700-pound gorilla that shelved the 1-cent countywide sales tax increase for November’s ballot. Though they provided some generic excuses, the real reason they did not want this on the ballot was due to the large voter turn-out, most of who would undoubtedly vote against it.
Instead, they opted for the April ballot where the turnout would be light and the proponents for the tax hike would be a greater percentage of the voters. I’ve seen similar tactics used by schools. Propositions that fail time and time again, magically pass during the “off-season” elections. I am not insensitive to the problems of schools due to the inability of the state politicians to clean up the mess they have made, but I feel that shaking down the property owner is not the way to handle the situation. If sports and other non-education extras have to be sacrificed, then so be it.
I encourage those in St. Clair county who are sick and tired of having their tax bills constantly increase to vote against this measure once it comes on the ballot. Politicians have no problem raising our taxes, and it almost takes a miracle to have them lowered. We in St Clair County are already burdened by one of the highest property tax rates in the United States. It is time to say “no more.”
Scott Van Aken, Lebanon
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