Letters to the Editor

Illinois tax hike, fireworks get BND readers to sound off

Flowing like honey

With the passage of the Illinois budget, the cash will begin to flow like honey again to money takers while businesses will continue to wait in line for the state to pay its bills. Thanks BND for publishing the statements of our fine leaders after completing their “hard work.” Good to see that our local Republicans Meier and Cavaletto came to their senses. The same simple-minded political drivel from Hoffman, while Costello takes the cake. A supposed conservative Democrat, he used the Bernie Sanders tried and true “millionaires and billionaires not paying their fair share” line. Give it a rest already. Do you all buy that there in Smithton?

Seniors off the cliff

Madigan’s useless minions passed an Illinois budget and raised your state taxes 32 percent. Now, they are hitting the road, bragging how they worked for the middle-class, seniors and the poor. Democrats are still $2 billion over budget. The Democrats even stuck in the 911 tax hike and allowed AT&T to terminate landlines in Illinois. Good to see the Democrats claim they are for seniors. More like Democrats throwing seniors off the cliff. But as long as there are enough dumb middle-class and senior voters, Madigan and his Democrats will continue to run Illinois into the ground.

Direct deposit tax

I have an idea to ensure I pay my fair share. Given the increase in my St. Clair County property taxes this spring and now a 32 percent increase in Illinois state income taxes, I think it would be best for Illinois to allow its citizens to have our pay checks direct-deposited to the state. The state, counties, cities, villages, townships and districts could take the dollars they need from our pay checks and then send the dollars left, if any, to us once a month, minus postage of course.

Goodbye, Illinois

The increase in the business income tax will only hurt job growth in Illinois. As more people leave the state to find jobs with substantially lower taxes, very few will move here. Home vacancies will begin to increase. Homeowners will have to dump their homes at deflated values. Construction of new homes will trickle to almost nothing. Used homes will be a better buy than new ones. Illinois residents will lose their jobs. Bureaucrats will spend the declining revenues on their pet projects and still be hopelessly in debt. We’ll be worse off and our bond status will be junk.

Tax state pensions

I was outraged when I read the BND editorial that said the average family in Illinois would be paying $1,205 in increased state income tax. I’m even angrier that our state government’s grossly underfunded and overly generous pension funds are exempt from state income tax. The Illinois legislature that made this happen is exempt from the increased tax on their own pension benefits. Isn’t Illinois a wonderful place to live?

Pension protection

The Illinois Constitution protects, in an unconstitutional way, a select group of citizen’s pensions — public workers. Public unions and their members colluded with politicians to increase public pension benefits. It incurred unconstitutional and unbalanced budgets. Now, they’re asking for the Illinois citizens of today to pay for it.

Fireworks stress dogs...

We are elderly and have a service dog who is terrified of fireworks. On the Fourth of July, illegal fireworks were set off in our neighborhood until midnight and later. Our dog was stressed and had reactions all the next day. In the past, we have called the police about the fireworks being shot off near our house. They told us that they didn’t bother to catch all of the people who shot them off. “There are so many,” they said. You can’t buy or sell fireworks in Belleville. This was not a legal display with a permit. Fireworks are illegal but ignored. It’s not fair.

...and veterans, too

For those who set off noisy fireworks, this causes great disturbance to our veterans. Perhaps if you had risked your life defending the freedoms of this country, you too would be disturbed to hear sounds that are so reminiscent of gunfire. This seemingly harmless behavior causes so much pain. It wakes sleeping citizens and children in their beds. God bless each of them. Fireworks are illegal in the city for more reasons than simple safety concerns.

Belleville’s dump

Belleville’s city dump is a disaster and haven for insects. More than an acre of tree stumps, limbs and trunks are piled 10 to 15 feet high. Next to this is a pile of street sweepings also 10 feet or higher. On the west side are weeds, saplings and a swamp. The Center for Disease Control predicts this will be a banner year for mosquitoes and ticks due to early warm weather. We were told that Belleville planned for a chipper to mulch and dispose of this mess in May. That didn’t happen. The EPA and health department were made aware of this issue and they said to take the problem to Belleville officials. And did I mention what a beautiful sight this makes as you enter our city?

Kelly for congress

Brendan Kelly for Congress? He’s got the look, says all the right things and has the pedigree. That said, he’s been working, interacting, and socializing with a sometimes less than savory cast of characters in the St. Clair County “swamp” since 2010. You have to wonder how much rubbed off and how he can possibly come out smelling like a rose.

Using veteran status

As a veteran, I’m upset that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Brendan Kelly are using his veteran’s status as a platform to run for Congress. For a man that says that people shouldn’t be ruled by the rich, he takes his orders from Sprague. I hope that this candidacy reveals some of the corruption in St. Clair County and our failure to correct those problems. Also, Kelly complains about health care for veterans. Let’s not forget that his mentor, Jerry Costello, who had an opportunity to stop Obamacare from being passed, hedged on voting for it because of abortion issues. Obama promised that it wouldn’t be in there, but of course it was. At the final vote, they caved.

Give us congress plan

A quick and easy solution to the healthcare issue: Congress has the Cadillac of health care plans. We should just give everyone the plan that they have.

Do not call? They do

Does anyone else have this problem? I’m a disabled senior who is home all day. My phone rings up to 20 times a day. Eighteen of those calls are robo-calls or from people asking for money. My biggest problem is that they all have a “do-not-call” option. I sign up and they call anyway. I put myself on the federal “do-not-call” list and they call anyway. This is ridiculous.

TIF for millionaires

Once again, the millionaires of Auffenburg Ford come to Belleville city leadership with hat in hand wanting TIF money.

Question politicians

To all the local civics teachers, please start educating your students about local Illinois and U.S. government. At a local city council meeting, you have the right to ask questions, but no one has to answer them. Students, stop wasting your time on “word of the day.” Ask a question and demand an answer.

Test hydrants

I saw that three homes were destroyed in Collinsville because of unmaintained hydrants. The fire department used to test hydrants on a regular basis. Why are they not doing it now? Saw four out of the top five salaries in Collinsville were firemen making over $100k. Get out of the station and begin flow checking again. Maybe they think their job is not public safety — it is how much money they can make with the least work. And wake up, city manager, this is happening right in front of you.

Collinsville rental ruins

It’s about time Collinsville has the sheriff deliver code violations to the owners of rental property. Maybe they will take it more seriously and get the repairs done. No more poorly kept rental property should be allowed in the city limits. It’s getting out of hand with some of these landlords.

Get high, die

I’m tired of hearing about the so-called “opioid epidemic.” Let’s use the Singapore solution: they execute drug dealers. If you don’t want to die, don’t get high.

Rains gets it

Thank you, Brent Rains, for your letter to the editor about Illinois. He gets it.

Trial for Hillary

Hillary gives 20 percent of U.S. uranium reserves to Russia. The Clinton Foundation gets a $2 million donation and Bill gets a $500K speaking engagement in Moscow. A Russian deal was made, money exchanged hands, and Hillary did another favor for Russia. If the new media wasn’t so clueless, they could probably add two and two and get four. Hillary puts a server in her home basement. Hillary installed anti-virus software and thinks she is protected. Hillary has dozens of top-secret documents on the server, which showed up on numerous other computers. Loretta told Comey you can’t prosecute stupidity, so let her be president as a favor to Bill. Why isn’t Hillary on trial for treason?

Welfare standards

Lyda Krewson and the media keep telling us we have a problem with gun violence but we actually don’t, we have a problem with criminal violence or gang violence. If taxpayer money is going to be used to subsidize the “baby momma” lifestyle, taxpayers have a right to expect they be held to community standards. As a former military brat, our moms would caution us to behave because our behavior could cost our fathers money, a chance at promotion or even get us evicted from base housing. It would be fitting if poor behavior had consequences for those on welfare as well.