Taxation Without Representation?
by Jim Gesick, Montrose
Jan 30, 2014 | 734 views | 0 0 comments | 39 39 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Editor:

The proponents of the proposed Montrose Rec Center are not coming clean with the voters.  How is it legally possible that the Rec District can tax the entire district but only the residents of Montrose City get to vote on the tax? Obviously I am missing something in the Montrose tax rules because this truly is taxation without representation (I happen to live in the city so that’s not my issue). This needs a clear public answer and soon, either from the city or the Rec District – it may not be technically illegal but it sure is ethically and morally wrong.

This is not just a tax quibble; it is a fundamental breach of fair and equitable tax principle – the city voters are being given a disproportionate incentive to vote for the tax because they know many "outsiders" will have to pay it so in effect the city residents may think they are getting the proverbial "free lunch" which is precisely what the Rec Center supporters are banking on.  I suspect the advocates think they can get away with this chicanery because they believe to challenge its legality would cost too much in time and money.

The city voters need to think clearly on this issue and at a minimum demand that the Rec Center advocates come clean and present their financial situation honestly and completely. There are significant external costs to the city to accommodate the Rec Center, such as Woodgate Road improvements, that are not even addressed in the proposal as presented. The financial data presented to the voters thus far is incomplete and skewed very favorably for the Rec Center; the city voters will soon find that this “free lunch” is going to cost them dearly if the tax passes.

 

 – Jim Gesick, Montrose

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