Up and down el Rio Blanco: No new taxes

Meeker High School teacher and former Colorado state representative Kathleen Kelley quoted president Thomas Jefferson before moderating the Meeker Board of Education candidate forum Monday last.
“Information is the currency of democracy,” quoted Kelley.
It is budget season for local taxing entities and a good time to take inventory of what we have in Rio Blanco County.
In this week’s issue, we published the county’s assessed value for 2011 at $1.303 billion (yes, billion) dollars and the sources of property tax revenue and how it is distributed among the county, towns, schools, college and special districts.
We also published the annual revenue generated by the special districts since the year 2000, including preliminary revenue for 2011.
In the weeks to come, the Herald Times will begin to present information regarding the special districts, their boards, meeting times and missions. The Herald Times publishes meeting dates, times and agendas when submitted.
The only state issue on the Nov. 1 ballot is for Proposition 103, which will raise state income tax from 4.63 percent to 5 percent and increase the rate of the state sales and use tax from 2.9 percent to 3 percent for the years 2012 through 2016.
The increases are projected to generate $536.1 million in 2012 to fund public education K-20.
Personally, I don’t believe this is the time to raise taxes on anyone, especially not knowing what our school districts and college will get if the proposition passes and what it will mean to students if it doesn’t.
We need to continue to gather information and attend meetings to better understand where we are and use the revenues wisely to help each other get where we want to be.
I agree with candidate Marnell Bradfield who said, “We need better efficiencies, not new taxes.”