During the Presidential campaign, Republican candidate, Senator John McCain, has said that now is the wrong time to raise taxes. Senator McCain believes with a struggling economy, additional taxes would put another hardship on taxpayers. But don't tell that to the Town of Hempstead. With families hurting with possible escalating oil prices for the winter and a troubled market, Republican Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray plans on increasing taxes for residents of the unincorporated areas of the town such as West Hempstead, Franklin Square and Elmont by 6.6 percent or $45.90 over the 2008 budget, according to Murray's 2009 budget message.
Supervisor Murray cites plummeting mortgage revenues as well as softening sales tax receipts as pressures that come with the 2009 budget. However, the 2009 budget proposal calls for a $4.9 million spending increase over the 2008 budget.
With families hurting financially, residents need their government officials to keep spending in check. However, it seems that the easier solution is to go to the taxpayers for more money in order to feed the machine of government.
The town should at least take a longer look at its budget before having to ask the taxpayers to pay even more money. If you live in Elmont, West Hempstead and Franklin Square, the unincorporated areas, you will find yourself paying more money and what have you gotten in return?
In West Hempstead, many residents simply want the Courtesy Hotel to close. Nothing has happened yet. In Elmont, people want a redevelopment of areas that are underdeveloped. Nothing has happened yet.
Perhaps if the town were to act on some of the projects that never seem to get done, then more revenue will be brought in and there will be no need to ask homeowners to pay more than they are already paying. It's time for the town to do more for these residents than just tax them.
- Joe Rizza