Many Mehlville seniors would have supported ‘reasonable’ tax hike

To the editor:

I am writing this letter in response to Mr. Michael J. Nolan’s letter concerning the defeat of Proposition C that appeared in the Call’s Thursday, Feb. 10, edition.

Mr. Nolan made some very disparaging remarks regarding seniors/retirees by stating: “Are all retirees in the Mehlville School District this selfish?”

Mr. Nolan goes on to say, “Or is this just a small vocal minority of the retirees that are just cheap and do not care about the future of the children within their school district?”

Mr. Nolan, there are many seniors/retirees within this district who would have voted for a more explicit, well-thought-out and reasonable tax increase for our schools.

Of the proposed increase of 88 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, which by the way is a 25-percent increase, the largest single component of this monstrous increase was to fund a performing arts center at both high school campuses. That bears the question, was or is this kind of expenditure a true necessity at a time when the economy is at its lowest point in 70 years?

Yes, some of the tax increase is needed for building upgrades, teachers’ salaries, et cetera, but not the vast majority — which is roughly 62-plus percent of the proposed 88-cent tax-rate increase.

Our school board needs to take some lessons from other county school boards that passed tax increases while ours failed. One reason is that other school boards have the faith of their constituents and they delineate what is going into or reasons for the tax increase — not try to lump sum our voters into voting in favor of idealistic nonsense.

As far as these cheap retirees, have you ever tried living on a fixed income that has not seen an increase for over two years?

Have you had to decide whether to pay increased taxes for schools or increased food and energy costs, plus heaven forbid you might have to take medication that keeps going up and you would be left with another decision, which is to eat, or maintain your health, or pay unnecessary higher taxes?

The pocketbook, as they say Mr. Nolan, is not limitless; people have to survive. Or are you saying that we have led our lives and now have to give it up so the young people can have everything?

Gary L. Younce