Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Won't you guide my sleigh tonight?

An amusing article appears in the Baltimore Sun today. Ken Ulman and every member of the County Council are falling over themselves to play Santa Claus to the police and firefighter unions. They want to give a full property tax credit to disabled public safety workers, despite having absolutely no idea how much it will cost.

The problem is that no one knows exactly how many people might be eligible, and thus what the cost to the county treasury would be.

"We really don't know what the universe is, if we open it up," Watson said at one point.

Jeff Meyers, the senior council analyst who researched the issue, agreed there is no firm figure for potential beneficiaries. "The best we can figure, it's not going to be a lot of people," he told the members.

The best I can figure is that they must be spending money that someone else earned. If property taxes are too high, then please lower them. Nobody enjoys paying taxes. But don't give handouts to politically favored groups, even if those groups have unions that shovel money into your political campaigns.


Anonymous said...

You've hit on a very sore subject --Property taxes.

7 years ago mine were $2500 which was bad enough. No mortgage, but still have to pay $200 monthly or loose my home! NOW I pay $4800 and I don't hear anyone else complaining about it. What is wrong with taxpayers? When is enough going to be enough? We've seen electeds do every possible insane thing with OUR money, and we continue to re-elect them locally because they have nice commercials and newspaper sized advertising brochures!! They are not celebrities, stop treating them as if they are royalty and maybe they'll start acting like public servants.

Come on People!! Get steamed, I want some company.

Anonymous said...

so, you are opposed to a tax credit? there is no way to accurately figure how much a credit wouldcost becuase you don't know who would become disabled.

it would likely cost less than $100,000 in a $1.2 billion budget for people who were disable serving howard county citizens.

i thought you supported lower taxes.

Freemarket said...

Anon, please provide me the courtesy of reading what I actually wrote and not projecting some crazy idea that you have of what I wrote. I DO support lower taxes. What I DO NOT support is this concept that the County Council embraces of lowering taxes for certain groups but not others. If property taxes are too high (and I believe they are), then I fully support a drop in property tax rates. What I disapprove of is playing property tax Santa Claus with certain groups and not others.

This is a blatant case of the Council and Ulman pandering to a special interest group that just so happen to be very politically active (i.e. labor unions).

Anonymous said...

Why are disabled public safety workers any more valuable to this county than other workers?

These people chose that line of work, they weren't forced into it. They get paid (plenty if you check out the salary info released) like the rest of us.

The idea that their jobs are selfless while ours are not is simply false.