Can we afford the governments taxing us?

Linn County (LC) contains 17 cities and part of an 18th city (Walford).  It contains all or part of 18 school districts and it is one of the counties supporting Kirkwood Community College.  LC is comprised of 19 townships, 7 fire districts, a County Assessor, a Cedar Rapids City Assessor, and an Agricultural Extension Council.  All of the preceding are taxing entities, but who taxes you depends on where your real estate is located.

According to the Census Bureau, 43,659 of our 87,318 households* have income less than $59,322; 48,135 of our 96,271 housing units are valued at less than $147,400; and 11% of our population is living in poverty.  Can our residents continue to afford to fund the governments taxing them?

Recently, I attended a meeting and someone said, “We have too much government”.  Iowans love local control.  The byproduct of local control is local government and its employees … and costs … and taxes.  Again, I ask:  can our residents continue to afford to fund the governments taxing them?

Which services do residents want to give up?  The answer:  none that they are using?  Which government offices/departments do they want to consolidate?  None, if it means they will lose control?  And none, if they like the person(s) in the office?  So are we stuck in the status quo?

Can our residents continue afford to fund the governments taxing them?  If we assume that we have too much government and we assume our residents cannot afford to increase their funding of the governments taxing them, then what are the solutions?  Let’s talk.  –Joel D. Miller – Linn County Auditor

*Persons per household (2011-2015) = 2.42







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