Thank you, Jim Strickland

Last night the only hold out on the City Council against Wharton’s budget was Midtown City Councilman Jim Strickland. I don’t know why Strickland voted against it, but it was the right vote.

The vote was 10-1 to add an additional 18 cents to our property tax supposedly to help Memphis City Schools.

I say supposedly for the city schools because schools and children are always what officials point to when they are sticking their hands in our wallets. Who could be against schools? Who could be against our children? Only the most heartless among us, eh?

I’ve watched over the years how the more money the city takes from us, the worse city schools become. There’s always money for administrative costs such as furniture for offices, money to order food that is left to rot at warehouses, money for administrative trips. This is not helping the children or raising education standards.

What about the elderly? Some of the homeowners who are going to pay for all of this have to dig deep to pay the taxes. Where’s the Council’s sympathy for them?

At a time when many people are struggling to keep their homes, isn’t adding to their burden the worst thing you could do? Don’t the council members see the exodus out of the city of Memphis to places that don’t impose these costs? Isn’t it penny wise and pound foolish to lose your revenue makers?

They say the 18 cent assessment is temporary. Who believes that? That’s just the sugar coating to make us swallow this bitter medicine. When does a tax ever get removed? The answer is never. Remember the wheel tax? Probably you don’t because that one-time tax happened decades ago. We’re still paying it.

And so it will be with this “one time” 18 cent tax.

Why would anyone believe that the economic situation next year will be better than this? From what I see the recession is tipping towards depression.

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