2011-08-20 / Editorials & Letters

Baltimore spends too much

Editor:

A large number of people are concerned about the level of federal government spending, but there does not seem to be much concern about spending in Baltimore. I have lived here since 1960 and I have never seen spending like this before.

It seems to have started with the arrival of Village Administrator Marsha Hall. First there was the Service Superintendent who was to be the “boss” of the department “bosses.” Well, sanity finally prevailed and that position was eliminated. Then there was the employment of a “full time” police chief and the growth of the police department. Village council and the apparently the mayor think this spending is good for Baltimore, because it seems that they “rubber stamp” everything that the administrator wants to do. We have a new underground water storage tank, paid for with our tax dollars, that was built to accommodate the “growth of Baltimore.” Just look at the 1960 U.S. Census figures and compare them to the 2010 ones and show me the “growth of Baltimore.”

I remember when we had a street repaving project every year, but can you tell me when we last had a street in Baltimore paved? The village attorney appears to be the busiest person town with all the new laws and rules that are being initiated, all while businesses downtown are struggling, other than the empty storefronts.

Baltimore used to give a “credit” of 50 percent for the income taxes local residents pay where they are employed, but that is gone too. Baltimore owned the pizza shop and received rent from that building for several years, but for whatever purpose the building was sold. My guess is that they needed the money. Now that they see that they cannot afford the police department, they want us to pay for it with property taxes. I wonder if the ballot issue is approved and the financial burden is passed on to property owners and ultimately to tenants whether Baltimore will lower the income tax. I doubt it.

Baltimore has only one other source of tax revenue and that involves taxing Social Security and retirement income. That would bring about a lot of “new faces” in the village’s elective offices. Rather than risk the “ire” of seniors, they chose trying to unload the huge costs associated with the operation of the police department onto village property owners. I have no issue with the police department other than its size and cost to operate.

Government at all levels has transformed from being a servant of the people to people being servant o government. To my knowledge, the village administrator does not live Baltimore, but likely pays income tax to Baltimore, but property owners are the people who will get to pay for the police department that was likely a result of her ideas and now the village can no longer afford.

Charles R. Lamb
Baltimore

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