Transportation 1% sales Tax

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mike Sims
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Joined: 12/17/2011

The Transportation 1% sales tax is bad for the Economy. Taking $1.8 billion out of the economy each year and putting in the hands of government is not a good way to improve the economy, just the opposite. People buying and selling in the market place is what makes an economy. Giving GDOT a 96% increase to their 2011 budget of $1.9 billion is a massive tax increase and unwarranted grab of taxpayer’s monies when the economy is barely making a recovery.

The Tsplost tax is an unfair tax in that it taxes the poor, the fixed income, and those who have the least; to subsidize special interest and to subsidize those who use the systems the most. This is a regressive tax against those who have the least; it applies to food and home heating fuels but exempts gasoline, exempts auto purchase price above $5,000, and MFG energy use taxes. Some will say the poor have food stamps and they do; but anyone who knows anything about food stamps, knows the State has cut back on food stamps and under the best of circumstances has never given the poor enough to purchase all the food they need; that is why our food pantries run short of food and appeals are made for food donations. A regressive tax such as a sales tax is reason enough alone to vote NO to this tax on July 31, 2012.

This tax is also an unbalanced tax in that it takes monies from some of the smaller counties and redistributes to 1 larger county (Fulton) in the region. While counties do keep some of the monies they collect (LARP MONIES), a portion of the other monies is sent to the other larger county in the region. It is a bad return on investment for smaller counties. The dollar numbers are inflated by GDOT and the projected costs of projects are minimized, a standard operating procedure for government to entice voters to approve of more government spending. We see what’s happening in Europe and here at home with massive government spending. Government spending hinders economic growth and should be curtailed. We are trillions of dollars in debt and no one has a clue how this debt will be paid. Debt makes us a poorer country and a poorer people. Projects in counties not fully funded by the TIA monies will be another burden put upon the local taxpayers, as no plans have been put forth as to where the monies will come from in order to fund projects not fully funded by this tax. The projections of revenue to be collected will not come close to actual dollars collected. The cost of projects will go up as no one can predict construction cost 2 years in advance, much less 10. Projects in the 8-10 phase will fall by the wayside because revenues will not come in to match projections, and also because of increased construction cost.
The amount of monies projected to be collected over 10 years would require more than a 6% increase in taxes collected every year, for 10 years straight, in order to meet the amount of monies projected for transportation projects. Even Financial Advisors and Banks will not guarantee that kind of sustained revenue growth; for the State to do so is irresponsible.

This is a bad tax altogether. It takes away county home rule by taking away County level vote. It depends on a region level plurality vote; County level vote is invalid and does not apply. It creates and gives validity to a Regional level of government with taxation powers and without a State Constitutional Amendment. A Region form of government without the rules, laws, and charter our counties have under the State Constitution. There are no checks and balances with this region level concept, only what is decided behind closed doors. Saying NO to this tax also says no to a Region level of government that would not be responsive to the voters.

Mike Sims

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