There are no ‘extra’ dollars for Suffolk taxpayers

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 9, 2005

Editor, the News-Herald:

Your paper must have hired a new writer, perhaps the city’s &uot;spokesman&uot; Mr. Craff, to write or help write stories &uot;spinning&uot; the City’s latest real estate tax grab.

The headline in the May 18th edition of the Suffolk News Herald, &uot;Tax Cut on the Table,&uot; was intriguing, and I carefully read the article in the vain hope the headline might be true. But in the end, all you were talking about was the insulting &uot;2 cents worth,&uot; the City Manager threw in the face of Council Members who wanted to make a meaningful cut in the tax rate. So when the rhetoric was sorted out, four of our illustrious council members voted to &uot;reduce&uot; the real estate tax rate by 2 cents per hundred dollars of inflated property assessments, thereby saddling the real estate owners in Suffolk with a WHOPPING INCREASE IN TAXES OF MORE THAN 15 PERCENT over last year!!!!)

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Then same the article in yesterday’s paper stating that owners of real estate in Suffolk will have a &uot;few extra dollars&uot; because the City Council (really the four council members aligned with the City Manager) had approved a &uot;reduction&uot; in the real estate tax rate of 2 cents per hundred. Somebody down there had better stop &uot;smoking them left-handed cigarettes&uot; and join the rest of us in the real world – there ain’t no such thing as having a &uot;few extra dollars&uot; if you own real estate in Suffolk. And we had better resign ourselves to getting more of the same in the future, because just as sure as God made little green apples, the same 4 members who voted against us this year will be back for another 4 years after this year’s formality of councilmanic elections has run its course.

I thank Messrs. Bennett and Milteer and Ms. Johnson for their vote against accepting the pitiful &uot;cut&uot; in the tax rate of 2 cents, but Mr. Bennett’s turn-around vote for the bloated budget defies all logic.

C. L. Willis, P. E.