WESTMINSTER -- Del. Richard C. Matthews, a Carroll Republican, congratulated a group of residents last night for starting a taxpayers association.
"You should be commended for embarking on this very fruitful journey," he said.
The Carroll County Taxpayers Association had its first public meeting last night at the County Office Building. Twenty-one people attended.
"We hope to be a forum for concerned citizens on tax and budget issues in the county and state," President Tom Boyle of Westminster said.
"We want to be a positive change," he said, adding that the group's aim is not to be "radical."
The group has been meeting formally since May when it elected a board of directors, he said.
About 150 people are on the mailing list, but fewer have paid the $5 yearly dues, said Mr. Boyle, a contract negotiator for Westinghouse Electric Corp.
"We're just getting off the ground," he added.
The board meets monthly, and the association hopes to sponsor forums with guest speakers regularly, he said.
"We believe enough is enough," Mr. Boyle wrote in a recent newsletter.
"All government, both at the state and local levels, needs to get serious about cutting expenses and projecting realistic income."
Mr. Matthews, chairman of the Carroll delegation, said it's important for the taxpayers to have a voice in Annapolis.
Special-interest groups get their message across loud and clear, but legislators don't always know how people "back home" feel on certain issues, he said.
"I wish you all the success in the world. You have my support," Mr. Matthews said.
Legislative leaders this session probably will work to make state government "more efficient and more businesslike and less expensive," he said.
They are more serious about making cuts than in past years, he said.
For more information about the taxpayers group, call Mr. Boyle at 875-0576.