Dear Sirs: Just a brief thank-you to Newton County Commissioners Mort Ewing, Tim Fleming and J.C. Henderson for your votes not to pursue the purchase of the Norfolk Southern right-of-way in Newton County.
The price is too high and there are so many more better uses for our shrinking tax dollars. The right-of-way purchase has been pushed by a small group of our citizens who will personally benefit (financially or by having new trails to blaze) from local control of the right-of-way.
The few will continue to fight to have all our citizens pay millions for an ever expanding trail system used by so few.
It looks like the chairman and commissioners Lanier Sims and Nancy Schulz don't get "financial responsibility." They promote an expenditure of millions for the right-of-way purchase when the county can't fund its existing programs.
The county millage rate increased over 10 percent last year and the county is facing a major revenue shortfall for the next budget year.
Some of our elected officials are promoting another increase in the millage rate from 10.91 to 12.12 (or higher). That would be another 11.1 percent for those tax payers (almost all farm, commercial and industrial property owners) who did not have a reduction in their tax values.
Please understand the plight of the businesses in our county who cannot afford another large tax increase.
Please hold the line on spending and taxes. If the board of education can adopt a budget without a tax increase, so can the board of commissioners. Please hold the line on taxes.