Saturday, August 19, 2006

Backend tax raises

From the Times
Revenue: growing, growing, gone
As property values boom, tax money pours into local governments, which always seem to find ways to spend it and avoid cutting taxes.

"It has become a shrewd political maneuver in this era of robust property growth. Politicians can tout new parks or libraries and cut your tax rate. But the bottom line is, you're paying more. Much more."

Tampa property tax receipts
2001-2002: $97.7-million
2006-2007: $167.7-million
St. Petersburg property tax receipts
2001-2002: $64.4-million
2006-2007: $103.4-million
Clearwater property tax receipts
2001-2002: $30-million
2006-2007: $55.5-million


LordHelpUsAll said...

What a scam. It has got to be time to start a grass roots effort to clean the city of the corrupt political leaders. I read in today's paper that they are going to demolish a perfectly good Art museum, move it a few feet and rebuild so we can have more green space along the river. The total project could cost in excess of $150 million to the tax payers of Tampa. Millions have already been wasted on the museum plans and consultants, etc. Maybe if she would consult with the residents of Tampa, we could have saved the millions. At what point will our city leaders learn that we are tired of footing the bill for their thrifty ways. We need to fix and correct what we have before spending more money. This administration seems all to happy to spend. She has added so many layers of high salaried employees to the payroll and created new parks at an all time rate. In the meantime, our exsiting parks lack little appeal or are unsafe, our neighborhoods lack adequate services (lighting, curbs and sidewalks) our code issues are at an all time high led by a team that plays the shell game to "fool" us all that more cases were opened and closed in their tenure, our streets are flooding with the slightest sprinkle as they continue to pave and concrete entire lots so developers can build bigger and more buildings. However, it is the taxpayers that have to come behind and pay to correct problems that could have easily been avoided with minimal logical sense. The city has a major litter problem yet to be addressed by our leaders, (but wait til '09 come Superbowl Time) Our mass transportation has been a joke... and to top it all off, evidently, there are dogs pooping all over the sidewalk!

shawn-non-anonymouse said...

Please remember that we do not pay state income tax. We are only one of three or four states not to pay these taxes. When comparing taxes with other areas of the country, income tax and sales tax need to be considered.

Tampa has squandered its waterfront either reserving it for wealthy homeowners or zoning it for industry or government housing. In a neighborhood bordered by the river on two sides, you'd think we'd have decent waterfront access--maybe even a boat launch. One park is bolted shut and the other is really just an undeveloped lot. The river ought to be a major focus for us, but its major impact on most of us is a choke point for commuter traffic. So yeah, let's tear down the old building and build a new one that will fix past mistakes and provide a better space for art and community events.

With our roads full of potholes, flooding on our streets, and lack of public transportation choices, ANY politician that suggests we cut taxes automatically loses my vote. We need to spend on infrastructure to make our city liveable when the population and gas prices double.

And speaking of losing my vote: any politician that votes to add more, wider freeways into the burbs loses my vote too. These freeway monstrosities pull investment out of the city center and into the suburbs and with our small county size, they also make it possible for neighborhing counties to increase their tax base while their populations use OUR infrastructure. Bad. Bad. Bad.

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% Shawn, however, I feel that as a city, we need to prioratize our spending. Instead of spending $200 million on the riverwalk and art museum, lets fix our streets, eliminate portable class rooms, etc. We keep allowing our city to spend our money with no accountability. I was let down when the old county court house was nixed from the museum plans. For one, it looks like a major museum in the larger cities, it was the least expensive, etc. There are many more pressing issues to address before spending such a large amount of money.

If it is the whole "tourism" string that will be pulled, take a look at Busch Gardens. This attraction brings more tourist than any other in the city. Before we build a gazillion dollar museum, we should first revitalize Busch Boulevard. It is an unsightly corridor that leaves a lasting impression on our visitors.