Control Growth of Property TaxesI am writing to urge Anne...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

October 25, 1992

Control Growth of Property Taxes

I am writing to urge Anne Arundel County voters to impose control on runaway growth of property taxation in our city and county.

Several years ago, property taxes paid for 38 percent of the county budget. Now, property owners support 42 percent of a greatly increased budget. Why should a single segment of the taxpaying public support tax growth at twice the nation's inflation rate?

Responsibility for runaway property taxation lies with our county leadership, most directly the County Council. We need new vision in our leadership. Continuing runaway property taxation growth will force people out of their homes.

What is needed is to control spending. I am not worried that essential services will have to be cut. . . . A wealth of unnecessary taxpayer funds continues to be spent. . . . However, short of controlling spending, growth in taxation should be vTC spread evenly across all taxpayers.

On Election Day, I urge voters to pass the property tax growth limiting initiative. Vote "yes" on Question D.

We can obtain new leadership by rotating people more regularly through the County Council. I urge taxpayer support of the term-limiting initiative for council members. Vote "yes" on Question C to impose a two-term limit. The council agrees with a term limit, since they also introduced a ballot initiative.

However, theirs would allow three terms starting in 1994, allowing some incumbents to serve in excess of 25 years. We should not have people retiring from these positions. Do not pass the council's term-limiting initiative. Vote "no" on Question B.

Geraldine Jones

Annapolis

Tax Cap

When Anne Arundel County voters go to the polls to vote -- we are going to vote, aren't we? -- on Nov. 3, they will be given the opportunity to slow down the growth of property taxes.

In fiscal year 1989, the writer paid $1,023.95 in county property taxes. For fiscal year 1993, this taxpayer paid $1,312.16. This is an increase of 28.1 percent in this period.

Are such increases affordable? People who rent or lease must also help pay these high property taxes through higher costs for renting or leasing. Other taxpayers might wish to examine their tax increases, rents or leases for this period of time to see how they fared.

The writer is of the opinion that they will experience the same type of frustration experienced by the writer. One thing that can be done to combat such property tax increases is to acquire greater public input into the control of the growth of property taxes.

Fortunately, The Anne Arundel Taxpayers Association has provided the voters an opportunity to have such a voice in property tax increases. . . .

Charles G. Wroten

Millersville

Gilchrest's Record

I am writing in response to articles that have recently been published that may leave some questions to who is the candidate in the 1st District race that best represents environmental interests.

From the perspective of one who was on the committee that interviewed both candidates on May 4 as part of the endorsement process, I can assure you that the Sierra Club feels strongly that Wayne Gilchrest is the man for the job. The League of Conservation Voters chart recently mentioned in the local press considers only 13 votes and co-sponsorships, while the Sierra Club endorsement decision is based on 25 floor votes and co-sponsorships, work in committees, environmental initiatives, interviews with the candidates, and environmental work in the district.

Furthermore, Mr. Gilchrest's experience living in the Idaho wilderness with his family has given him a unique perspective and an intuitive understanding of the interdependence of all things. This insight is essential for our congressman as he must deal with the wetlands issues that affect us all.

If we are to save the bay, the preservation of wetlands is essential. . . . Mr. Gilchrest has demonstrated his leadership on this issue by introducing the Wetlands Improvement Act (H.R. 3492) and as an original co-sponsor of wetlands protection bill H.R. 4255.

He has shown that he is "his own man" by disagreeing with his own party by often challenging Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) in committee and voting against Mr. Bush's desire to drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Additionally, he was one of 12 Republican congressmen to vote to remove funding from Vice President Dan Quayle's Council on Competitiveness, which has been a disaster. . . . Furthermore, Mr. Gilchrest has devoted his time to one of the most pressing problems facing his district -- waste disposal. In Somerset County, he helped stop a landfill that would have required the importation of waste from off of the Shore. In Dorchester County, he brought in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's emergency response team to clean up a creosote-contaminated wood treatment plant, and in response to citizen concerns in Aberdeen, he has introduced legislation to ban the burning of chemical weap ons at all federal facilities.

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