Every time our legislature creates new legislation in the middle of the night, it is either (a) bad law or (b) involves a tax hike. Before closing this years session they passed a series of bills which allowed for the skirting of the Headlee Amendment. I was feeling rather low as a result and I just could not bring myself to finish this blog last night. Today, as luck would have it, I received a shot in the arm. Call it corny if you like. The protagonist of the movie I watched, "Mr. Smith goes to Washington" was moved by his father's memory. His father and mine taught principle, patriotism, honesty, integrity and persistence.
These days it may seem a little hokey but that movie inspires me and keeps my spirit up. When I see the way some politicians operate, that movie gives me hope that the citizens have a chance to make a difference. I know that I am not alone in this or the movie would not still be a favorite classic after all these years, and whether you believe it or not, "I am not naive nor am I crazy."
John Hertel who is paid $150,000 each year plus benefits to be the CEO of "Detroit Regional Mass Transit" was a lobbyist whose job it was to pass the 16 bills to make possible the $1.5 billion initial funding for the 3.4 mile transit which would run down Woodward from the old GM Building on W. Grand Blvd. to the GM Building on Jefferson Ave. My question is who is going to ride this thing and where will they be going? After it is built, how much will we have to subsidize this transit system that goes nowhere? The big question is this, if the courts have found DARTA to be illegal, then how is this any different? Why should the people outside Detroit assume this burden especially without the opportunity of a vote? How can the Chief Executives of Wayne, Oakland, the Chair of the Commission from Macomb and the Detroit Mayor make this decision without the permission of the voters?
The other thing that passed in the wee hours Friday, was the Cobo Hall expansion. We have not finished paying off the previous bonds and they are ready to take out more. The plan would finance $288 million in changes by extending to 2039 taxes on statewide liquor sales as well as a Metro Detroit hotel-motel tax. Gov. Jennifer Granholm has said she will sign the legislation into law. Oh what a Big surprise.
Government is out of control. They have no respect for us or for the constitution they swore to uphold. We have a lot of work to do. Where is Mr. Smith when you need him? We must be the Mr. Smiths if we are to preserve our way of life. We can not continue to be "too busy" or we will find that we will not be allowed to do the things we were too busy doing. If we all give a little of our time paying attention, the job will not be so hard, after all, there are still more of us than them.
We live in a time of Special Assessments, increases in fees that are not legally fees, judges that make radical law or bend it to fit the political atmosphere and legislators who make law because they think they know better or it serves their purpose. I say it is they who have no respect for the law or the people who are indeed sovereign. We need to expose them.
The WCTA was organized in March of 1982 because of a deep concern over rapidly escalating and unjust property tax assessments. We are a non-profit, non-partisan volunteer taxpayer organization dedicated to obtaining fiscal integrity and responsibility from all levels of government.
In July of 1982, we incorporated with the State of Michigan and proceeded to build our membership. We have resolved that our elected officials should be more accountable to their constituents for their actions.
We believe that individuals can be effective but that together we can be even more effective. We hold regular membership meetings and also sponsor special and educational meetings on topics of interest to our members and the general community.
Only through a vigilant watch of the government can taxpayers ensure that our government is operating responsibly and efficiently.
Information is a very important ingredient of the WCTA. Our newsletter is sent to all members and we try to keep them apprised of existing and pending legislation that will directly affect their lives.
Contact us at: http://www.wctaxpayers.org