By Greg Hughes
As I walk around the city and speak to fellow taxpayers, it doesn’t surprise that me people are upset and how much distrust they all have toward state, local and federal government.
I believe this is what started the Revolution back in the 1700s. People (the peasants) were tired of the king squeezing them for more money.
A few people have told me that this one-cent sales tax would go to flood protection, others say roads, others say streets (which is important), and others have said it all goes downtown, just to mention some opinions. No one really knows. Legally, the city can tell you anything you want to hear until it gets the tax and then the city can do whatever it thinks is in the “best interest of the city.” Example: Streets can mean anything from repairs to beautifying projects, i.e., flower pots. Roads mean concrete to new sewers. It is important for people to know, if it was going only for repairing our roads, they could stomach it more.
This sales tax was to be a temporary tax to help the flood area and victims. We all have seen this money used for other things. So, let’s talk about trust? I don’t believe them!
We have new buildings which, OK we may need (maybe not as grandiose) but have used Federal Emergency Management Agency money and other flood money to build. Please remember federal money is still your money, comes out of the same pocket, yours!
But if the funds are available, then we need to use it. If not, someone has broken the law. We all have to remember construction means employment (Federal Building) and meant jobs. It kills me when people tell me that the cost of this building doesn’t mean anything because it is federal money. The courthouse is a very expensive building (grandiose). I’d like to see the heating and cooling bill. Wait, in two years, government will be asking for another sales tax to help pay for this too!
Fellow voters, we have to bring this arrogant and overtaxing city government to an end. This is a great city with great people and great minds.
The first thing I plan on doing is forming a think tank from our concerned residents and retired people. Rockwell spent the money to bring these people here and now they are retired and would love something to do. Let’s bring these people together and ask them to solve a problem for us. The cost: doughnuts and coffee.
If I could get people to trust and respect each other, it will be a win!
l Gregory J. Hughes is a candidate for Cedar Rapids mayor. Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org