Cognitive dissonance - an example from Austin, Texas

From the Austin American-Statesman:

Surge in property tax bills spurs push to reform tax appraisal process
On a recent evening, more than 300 homeowners who are worried about their rising property tax bills filled First Unitarian Universalist Church in North Austin for a town hall meeting. If something doesn’t change, many said, they will soon be priced out of their homes.

Two nights later, a similar discussion played out in South Austin, where homeowners gathered at Grace United Methodist Church in Travis Heights to talk about what can be done to slow escalating residential tax values.

“I’m at the breaking point,” said Gretchen Gardner, an Austin artist who bought a 1930s bungalow in the Bouldin neighborhood just south of downtown in 1991 and has watched her property tax bill soar to $8,500 this year.

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

Emphasis mine. How can Gretchen fail to understand that for every park, library, school improvement, etc... there is a price and that price is borne by the tax-payers who get to 'enjoy' the benefits.

Light Rail is in a class by itself - several studies have shown that given the total cost of construction divided by the number of regular riders, it would be cheaper to buy each rider a Prius. Based on the annual maintenance cost, it would be cheaper to give each Prius owner $10,000/year for fuel and maintenance.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on June 3, 2014 10:51 AM.

Augmenting the disease rather than curing it was the previous entry in this blog.

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