Saturday, June 30, 2012
The above title was the front page story in Thursday's Lethbridge Herald.
Some of my readers may remember previous posts of mine on this subject:
Municipal council's tax grab comes up empty, but the poor must still pay more
Oh me, oh my, the shit has hit the fan
With today being the final day to pay 2012 Property Taxes in the Crowsnest Pass, I thought it only fitting to remind people of the unscrupulous, deceitful, lying, 'gangsters in suits' we got running things here now in the Pass.
You may recall how Councillor Gallant and Mayor Decoux spoke on this issue at our recent Town Hall Meeting, deceitfully defending their actions of imposing an onerous 52% tax penalty on those who are unable, for whatever reasons, to pay their property tax bill on time. Decoux told us he talked with other mayors and they were aghast at how many residents here failed to pay their taxes on time. Telling us that one mayor told him he thought maybe his MD had 1 property that hadn't paid (who was he talking to? The MD of Foothills having a total population of 80 well-healed farmers and ranchers?), as if this should be an achievable standard our municipality should set for itself. (Maybe these guys need to read the Affordable Housing Survey (2008) to get an idea of the demographics of this area and the growing cap between the have's and have not's.) Meanwhile, in Lethbridge they have approximately 8% who do not pay on time (typical percentage on average of most towns, municipalities and cities in Alberta).
Using the above figure, here in the Pass that translates to approximately 259 properties (8% x 3234) that will not be able to pay their property taxes on time this year, who now face an annual 'usury' 52% tax penalty.
According to the above story Mayor and Council in Lethbridge are less than disturbed when people don't pay on time because then they are able to collect a whopping 18% annual interest on delinquent accounts. 'Manna from Heaven' is how they look at it. Whereas our 'experts in suits' look at it as a 'liability'?? Is 52% a liability deterrent? Or a money-maker? Of course, it is the later, rather than the former.
Last year and for some years prior our rate was in line with Lethbridge and the majority of other municipalities in Alberta, although slightly higher at 21%. But our mayor and council were not happy with that. They wanted more! So they raised it to 52% and proceeded to lie and continue to lie about the reasoning. Telling us every cock and bull story they could think of, except the real one. Which is this is nothing more than another sinister tax grab (to go along with all the others (including stealth taxes) they have been imposing on us since getting into office) on the most vulnerable residents in our community... the poor, seniors and those on fixed incomes unable to cope at times with today's tough economic realities.
So today, after the majority of us have paid our property taxes take a moment to think and reflect on those 259 residences who may be friends and/or neighbours of yours here in the Pass who are unable to do so, that are now victims of Greed and Class Warfare imposed upon them by their elected representatives. The "Shylock's" we now have running things here, who I'm certain will be remembered by these same people come election time. If not, I'll be certain to remind them from time to time until they either rescind this abomination of a bylaw or get replaced, allowing others to do it for them. btw/ If I choose to run again and get elected this will be one of my first actions as Mayor. Guaranteed! This will be something people here can take to the bank.
Tomorrow is Canada Day, a day to be proud to be Canadian... too bad we can't say the same about this tiny part of it, we know and have come to love as the Crowsnest Pass. When we have elected officials doing what they are doing to our most vulnerable fellow residents it definitely is not something to be proud of... but rather ashamed that we have such tyrannical leaders lacking in compassion, empathy and understanding for those not of their own selfish, elitist class.
When morality comes up against profit, it is seldom profit that loses.