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Doherty’s $1.37 Million Tax Increase

Mayor Doherty takes great pride in the fact that he has not raised taxes this year. I, personally have heard him point to that fact a dozen or more times.  And I’m sure we’ll being hearing this message from the Democratic camp quite a lot in the next couple of months.  But what about three years from now?  Or five?  Can Doherty make the case that his actions today will not necessitate tax increases down the road?

I’d like to hear him try.  In my mind borrowing and spending is the same thing as taxing and spending.  The only way to pay off the $1,372,000 in bonds that have been approved so far this year (and it’s only September!) is by raising taxes in a few years.  There is no other way.  Unless we move away from here, we will be paying higher taxes as a result of all the present spending.  Ultimately there is only one place the money can come from.  And that would be us.

I have publicly opposed some of the projects that this administration is borrowing money for.  I questioned if the marina could ever be made profitable enough to pay for the improvements we are borrowing to do.  I don’t believe it will be.  I also suggested the other week that instead of spending half a million dollars to replace the 10th Ave center island, we could achieve the goal of improved traffic flow by simply making the last few parking spots across from Jack’s Tavern and Sunsations for compact cars only.  And just for the record, considering the precarious state of the economy and of our jobs, I am opposed to every project that the administration is planning to issue bonds for this year.  

I am putting off all sorts of improvements I want to do to my house because I don’t want to go into debt.  So why would I want to go into debt to re-do some parking lots?  or 10th Ave?  or Belmar Plaza?  or the marina?  or whatever?  It’s not why I go to work each day. 

When council candidate Jim Bean questioned all this borrowing at Wednesday’s meeting, Councilman Magovern defended it by saying that with interest rates currently very low (which, btw, is destroying the dollar) it is a good time to borrow.  It is that kind of thinking that caused a lot of irresponsible borrowing by private people and by various governments over the last decade.  Debt is bad unless it’s used to invest in a productive enterprise.  Going into debt so we can have nice things now and pay for them later is not a good idea no matter how low interest rates are. 

I don’t believe that Mayor Doherty wants to be the one to have to raise taxes when it’s time to pay the piper.  My guess is he’ll run for the assembly seat I’ll be vacating when I ascend to the state senate in a few years.

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