It’s the easy solution to attack all elected officials for the high property taxes. Some will always be convinced the elected officials are the real problem. The problem isn’t always the elected official. Many have nothing to do with tax levies or budgets. Many are required by law to do the dirty work for the decisions of the boards and councils.
The real culprit is unnecessary spending requested by special interests. Why do the elected officials spend every dime they get from us? Partly because they are afraid their budgets will be cut back if they don’t spend it. But a bigger part is special interests. People get together and bend the ears of the elected officials for everything and anything. “Our schools should have the latest and greatest technology. While we’re at it let’s add a new, state of the art, sports complex to the budget.” “The city should have the very best looking baseball and soccer fields. While we’re at it let’s add bicycle paths and flowers hanging from every light pole.” “The county has the money from a referendum to buy green space. Let’s spend twice the market price for it and buy it from a friend. While we’re at it let’s make a state of the art lodge, horse stadium, and nature center.” All of these sound great on the surface but when the maintenance, manpower, upkeep, expansion, and expectations are met the true costs begin to show. Oh, let’s also understand that state or federal grants are NOT FREE MONEY!!! Why did the state just raise our income tax up to 5%? The “special interests” have to stop requesting these grants unless they are for roads, sewers, or other urgent infrastructure needs! Again, all of these “wants” are worthwhile until you begin to realize the true costs to the taxpayer over the long-term.
It’s no different for the people working in the government or our elected officials. We all think they deserve a decent wage and some benefits. After all they are our family, friends, and neighbors. The problem is that nobody did the math at today's 1% interest or loss of growth in the economy. It is like the housing bubble. Many of us couldn’t believe the prices homes were going for 5-10 years ago but we didn’t say anything. We just went along with it. Some even bought multiple homes thinking they could make a lot of money. Well that didn’t work out so well. We are now finding out our government doesn't have the money in reserve and the money was spent somewhere else for another special interest's pet projects.
We now have the opportunity to pay attention and stand up against those few who believe spending more is the answer to all our problems. Spending on the core things is crucial but spending on the special interest, louder yelling, and more active WHINERS is not. We need government to freeze their levies immediately! Many of us would like ALL LEVIES cut 10% this year. There will be special interests screaming. There will be leaders threatening to cut those things near and dear to us. Leaders and special interests always try to cut the emotional issues because they know they have always won doing that. This time we can’t allow that. We can force them into making deep cuts if we stick together and firmly tell them via email, phone calls, and in their faces that we will accept nothing less. They will find a way to make it work just as each of us has had to do in our own lives. Don’t try to tell me there isn’t a lot of fat and waste in those levies. We know better.
The time is now and we are the ones who will make it happen! No one else has the intestinal fortitude. Let’s make Kendall County the shining star in the state and show the world that we can make it happen - right here - right now!