The Sun Journal’s editorial of April 24 embraced the hypothesis that “the myth of free garbage service” infects taxpayer mentalities in our communities. Yet, anyone who has ever written a check for property taxes knows all too well that nothing is “free” in Lewiston/Auburn. Nonetheless, the editorial adamantly favors a user fee for a service already paid for by our taxes. Using the editorial’s own logic, let us open Pandora’s Box further.
How about user fees on the maintenance of our roadways based on the number of tires on our vehicles? How about user fees on the upkeep of our public buildings? Let’s not forget our fire and police services. How about City Hall’s latest taxpayer enema under the guise of storm runoff fees? Here’s one that will give society a painful wedgie, a use fee on the sacred cow of every community in America, the public school system. The list is endless and nothing is immune under such logic. Where do we draw the line?
If we bow our heads and accept this philosophy, we deserve what we get. Despite official shenanigans, money going from family budgets into government coffers are blatant taxes. Property taxes never decrease in proportion to user fees. Therein lies the fallacy in the hypothesis. In truth, “user fee” is nothing more than legal camouflage allowing officials to tax us twice for the same services. That the Sun Journal would advocate such an unconstitutional program is tragic.
Roger R. Turcotte, Lewiston