Perhaps you may have noticed that the comment sections in the Whidbey News Times and South Whidbey Record are looking rather lean. A tiny group of liberal malcontents launched a campaign to eliminate conservative voices. The objective is to control the message. Kasia Pierzga, the newspaper “Sheriff,” was happy to accommodate by deleting many conservative comments while liberal opinions and viewpoints remain.
The following is a dialogue between David Freed and Ken Wolf. Item number 4 was deleted from the South Whidbey Record:
1. “You keep talking about this burdensome taxation, but it’s not true. Truths about Island Co. property taxes: We have one of the lowest property tax rates in the state, lower than many Republican-controlled counties.
The greatest chunk of our property taxes are from those darn “tax and spend” citizens of Island Co and the state, who have decided we want to support our schools, parks, roads, EMT, hospital, libraries, etc. This is not a Democratic thing, it’s Democracy.
The only added “tax” that I’m aware of from the county is the rather modest clean water utility tax. The largest chunk of this tax supports stormwater improvements, a vital service I believe, given the flooding we saw in 2009 at Glendale and other flooding that I’ve seen during the 18 years I’ve been on the island. The tax also has provisions for people on fixed incomes so they end up paying less, so for most people it’s not the vast “burden” you’re making it out to be.
As an aside, the clean water utility tax will now cover the filling fee for septic inspections (a state-mandated program). For people like me who gets an inspection every three years, the new tax ends up being pretty much a wash. For those people who have to have annual inspections, the new tax will most likely save them a bit of money.” David Freed
2. David Freed, nice distortion tactic: “We have one of the lowest property tax rates in the state, lower than many Republican-controlled counties.”
“Your statement should read: We have one of the lowest current expense fund tax rates in the state. Actual overall property taxes for Island County compared to the rest of the counties places this county at number seven!” Ken Wolf
3. There was no “tactic” here, only stating what I believe to be true. As confirmation, I looked at
Comparison of Regular and Special Levy Rates at http://dor.wa.gov/docs/reports/2011/Property_Tax_Statistics_2011/Table_29.pdf
. . . which shows that only Kittitas and San Juan counties have lower regular and special levy rates than Island Co.
However, you saying that I’m referring to “lowest current expense fund rates . . . ” sure seems like a distortion tactic of the first order.” David Freed
4. David Freed, Congratulations on actually providing a reference however, your number does not mean much. http://www.islandcounty.net/assessor/documents/COMPARECHNGinVALUE-LEVY-RATEfrom1991to2011.pdf
Current Expense (General) Fund http://www.islandcounty.net/assessor/documents/ISLANDCOUNTYPROPERTYTAXES-CountyCommissioners2011.pdf
5. “Sentence should read: Actual overall property taxes per capita for Island County compared to the rest of the counties places this county at number nine using 2011 data.” Ken Wolf
While David Freed gives the impression that Island County residents are paying low property taxes, “You keep talking about this burdensome taxation, but it’s not true;” Island County ranks number nine in overall property taxes per capita. The 2011 rankings: King, San Juan, Columbia, Jefferson, Pacific, Klickitat, Skagit, Snohomish, and Island County
Perhaps David Freed and Kasia Pierzga, the newspaper “Sheriff,” would like to see us ranked higher?
On a side note: Does David Freed’s comment, “As an aside, the clean water utility tax will now cover the filling fee for septic inspections (a state-mandated program). For people like me who gets an inspection every three years, the new tax ends up being pretty much a wash. For those people who have to have annual inspections, the new tax will most likely save them a bit of money.” hold any truth? Think about that.