To you, Couns. Cam MacKay and Len Bracko, thank you for standing up for the taxpayer here in St. Albert.
To the others who voted against the tax limit of 1.5 per cent next year, you obviously do not hear the undercurrent going on in St. Albert about high taxes. We are tired of hearing members of council tell us that we need to pay more and more to live in the city of St. Albert.
What made you the experts on how much we can afford? Do any of you remember what you said in the last election? There were two people Monday night who obviously remembered and five other people proved that their election promises were lip service.
You have no financial responsibility as you are putting the taxpayer in bondage with the ever-increasing levels of taxation. If taxpayers said no to your tax increases, your inability to find ways to become more efficient would only prove your inability to function at present levels of taxation. Hence you do not know how to govern. In a time when the province of Alberta is showing fiscal constraint, you are off finding ways to spend more money on the taxpayer’s back.
It really disappoints me to hear you tell us that if we limit taxation, it will “limit your staff,” Mr. Mayor. We thought you and your council were the people that told the ‘staff’ how much money they had in their budgets. Obviously, the ‘staff’ is telling you how to run the city Mr. Mayor and you are rubber-stamping their expenditures.
What we need is leadership that is representing the taxpayers, not leadership that represents the people spending the money and their own self-interests. The leadership we have right now seems to represent small interest groups and the individuals on staff who think they have an unlimited amount of money to draw upon.
The staff and council get raises even if the average income of the taxpayer in this city goes down. It’s obvious that you are representing a very small minority of people who can afford to spend unlimited funds to get what they want. The other 99.9 per cent of us want a little relief from the oppression in this city by you: our mayor and council.
We have a nice city. I hope we will still welcome others into our community before the next election, not scare them away along with many of us already here by the ever-increasing burden of our taxes.
Ted Durham, St. Albert