Today, the BCC voted, 2-1, to increase the license plate fees. I voted no.
Overwhelmingly, the people who spoke to me told me that they're already overtaxed and they didn't want to have to pay more. Several mentioned the large number of levies requested to be on the ballot in November, along with rising prices everywhere (gas, oil, electricity).
The County Engineer made a very valid statement when he said that roads and bridges are the legitimate function of government. He's right. But when government spends so much money on non-essential services, it's hard to convince people to support an increase for legitimate governmental functions.
County Engineer Keith Earley has done a good job, so far, of managing the roads and bridges. He's correct when he says that construction and material costs are increasing, meaning that the money currently collected is going to cover less.
What my fellow commissioners fail to understand is that government cannot keep increasing fees and taxes, just because our prices go up. Something has to give, because the same people we want to collect more money from are experiencing the same increases in costs in their personal lives as we are in government.
We should be cutting our expenditures, reducing the size of government, and prioritizing our efforts and spending toward the mandatory government functions. But we're not, and it's our children who will pay the price.