Letters – County growth and voter involvement
Voters should take control
To the Editor:
I agree with you 100 percent about our so-called “government” and the decisions “it” makes to govern our lives (as if we don’t have sense enough to decide who we want to marry or what to do with our bodies or who is going to regulate our healthcare!!).
I don’t think the men who wrote the C
onstitution had any idea how far the “government” would go to take control of our every waking minute – making laws to regulate everything it can possibly regulate and doing a sorry job of getting anything done about the things it should really control – such as giving away millions of dollars in “foreign aid” to countries that don’t deserve it and then cutting military salaries because there just isn’t enough money left over.
I think it’s about time we fired everyone of those so-called law-makers starting with the President down thru both houses and maybe take out a few at the State level.
I don’t belong to any particular political party but I was encouraged by some of the things the “Tea Party” was advocating. If it takes another political party to get things changed and “done right,” I’m all for it.
Hopefully, next Independence Day will be a lot brighter and I don’t mean with more fireworks (at least, not the kind that lights up the skies!).
Reader questions ‘growth’ in county
To the Editor:
When some on Commissioners’ Court refer to “growth,” the term “growth” remains unclear. Do they mean growth of government or growth of businesses?
Capitalism, or business growth, rewards us all. Businesses put money into our pockets. With each new business, existing county businesses are enriched. More goods and services are purchased by the newly-hired employees, more employment opportunities are provided and our local tax base is strengthened. This in turn minimizes property taxes.
The opposite occurs when government grows. Government, by its very nature, takes money out of our pockets. If government grows at a rate comparable to, or surpasses business growth, we the taxpayers are figuratively and literally “short-changed.”
As more money is required to ‘feed’ the expanding government, our tax dollars cannot be used where they are needed most…. improving our county roads. Additionally, our tax base is threatened, necessitating increased restrictions, fines and permit fees (aka, the subdivision ordinance) to maintain the expanding government bureaucracy.
Expeditious government growth creates needless duplications. Currently we, the taxpayers, are supporting duplications in departments/ additionally funded budgeted line items, including: two ground maintenance crews; two building maintenance entities; three safety departments; two departments tabulating payroll (under auditor supervision); two secretaries under the County Judge; two vehicle maintenance entities; and until recently, two county administrators
As was stated by Judge Bonn recently in Commissioners’ Court, the terminated department employee is allegedly planning to sue the county. The County Judge and Commissioner Buchholtz appear to be supporting this employee’s notion of wrongful termination and are seemingly blaming others; not those who hired this duplication, but those who terminated this redundant department.
And we, the taxpayers, are also being forced to support an $8 million-plus (costs still being submitted) expenditure refurbishing the old Wal-Mart into a government building.
Never mind that we’ve reroofed and upgraded the AC in the current judicial center within the last two years, completed a facelift to the front of the building 8-9 years ago, that the Wal-Mart refurbishment will add to the numerous vacated buildings presently surrounding the square, that this project is located in a prime retail location, or that it will take us 20 years to pay off.
Remembering the last election, shouldn’t Judge Bonn be supporting the “people’s choice” commissioners by: eliminating duplications; topping the addition of superfluous departments; awaiting robust business growth, then adding only essential government services; using tax monies garnered from new businesses; concentrating on repairing our infrastructure rather than persisting in what some are dubbing “empire building;” working toward establishing a government complex situated entirely in the area around the Lockhart Courthouse; not randomly scattered across the county; increasing Courthouse parking… not reducing parking as the Austin-based “Sustainable Places Grant Money People” are mandating (do we really want to model Lockhart’s parking after the parking nightmare in Austin?); and using these steps to develop an overall county goal and agreed upon yearly plan!