Campbell deficit

Topics: Taxes
25 Oct 2007

From: Ervan Darnell

Campbell is medium sized San Jose suburb. This lead paragraph speaks
for itself:

> [...] the city explored ways to enhance Campbell's revenue. City
> leaders discussed possible options that would put them ahead of the
> deficit curve, which includes putting a 2008 measure on the ballot to
> increase Campbell sales tax or add a Campbell utility tax or raise the
> transit occupancy tax. All these possibilities would require voter
> approval.
Reigning in spending wasn't even an option to consider! The rest of the
article lists some of the things they want to spend the money on: "new
library", "funding of the Ainsley House, Heritage Theatre and city
parks.", and restore "shopping cart collection, neighborhood tree
planting and police overtime hours". I don't know how
under/over-staffed they may be on police, but the rest range from silly
to patronage. What's wrong with the old library? Especially in an era
where libraries are becoming increasingly irrelevant (due to the
internet content and shopping) and/or government piracy centers (when
they loan out current movies)? "Heritage Theatre"? You can just smell
the personal interest angle of a city council person on that one.

It begs another question: why is that that unchanging (percentage) tax
revenues result in a decrease in services? Sometimes certain labor
markets can see super-inflationary increases, but it's hard to imagine
the real cause is anything other than decreasing government efficiency,
a trend without apparent internal limit.

It's not that there is anything special about Campbell, but I just had
to laugh at how the city council and the reporter (who offered no other
point of view) just take as it obvious that taxes must increase to fund
ever more nonsense.
Ragnar mailing list