Budget suggestions for area governments | AspenTimes.com

Budget suggestions for area governments

Dear Editor:

September is normally a beautiful month of warm sunny days with golden aspen leaves covering the hills in bright colors with an occasional day of rain or snow. Let’s hope we will never repeat the Labor Day snow of ’61.

Inclement weather provides an opportunity to watch your local elected officials expound on various topics of concern to all taxpayers. To all elected officials, here is a suggestion from a long-time local “citizen taxpayer”.

Property taxes have more than doubled in recent years. Due, in part, to a burgeoning bureaucracy fueled by growth. In spite of Aspen’s notoriety as an enclave for the rich, Aspen still has a few poor folk who struggle to pay their property taxes, which support bureaucrats who seem to do nothing but attend meetings and think of more ways to spend our tax money. I do, however, wish to acknowledge a recent reduction in assessed property values, which might result in a decrease in taxes and enable us to pay next year’s tax bill with some change left over to pay other necessary bills.

When considering next year’s budget, why not reduce respective budgets by a mandated 5 percent for all departments including the salaries of all elected and appointed officials?

It seems to me that the bureaucracy has grown out of control over the years. Is it really necessary to have so many bureaucrats sitting in so many chairs? Give the poor worker bee in the street a pay raise, but cut the salaries of all the elected and appointed officials making more than two grand a month.

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Next year, I hope to vote for a candidate who will not increase my taxes. Please hold the line on expenditures and work to reduce our property taxes. Please stop spending our tax money to increase your salaries.

Jim Markalunas

Aspen