According to an article in the Mille Lacs County Times, our citizens were upset about the economy before the Big Collapse and big Bail-out. I'm sitting here with a big I Told You So begging to burst forth from my bitter lips. Here is the quote:
"As to the question of “Why are my Mille Lacs County taxes so high in the first place?” Stotz had another nugget of information to share.“We don’t have any big tax paying businesses in the county,” she said. Because of this lack the taxes get dispersed to the property owners instead of big business."
Notice that Pat Stotz, the County Assessor didn't say that we don't have any big businesses in the county, she said we don't have any big "tax paying" businesses in the county.... That's because most of the businesses in the area don't have to pay taxes. They are on TIF programs or have tax abatement. For example, NEXUS was given 7 years of free tax abatement by the Mille Lacs County board of commissioners AND 15 years by the Onamia city council. That's hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars of tax revenue that could have been used to help out our community and ease the burden of high property taxes placed on average citizens. You can see that these "incentive" plans don't work by looking at what happened at Izaty's. After years and years of tax abatement, the resort went bankrupt anyway.
Free taxes for big business does not work! This is just a little idea, but perhaps if they had to budget to pay taxes, they would have been a bit more careful, a little bit more responsible with their money. Seems to me that these businesses get so many special favors that they act like 10 year old children set loose on the carnival midway with a roll of free tickets, rushing mindlessly to beat the line, to jump on every ride, giggling with their chums right up until the time the cotton candy, soda pop, and one too many spins on the Scrambler make them puke all over themselves. (And on us...)
Milton and his merry men handed over the maximum tax abatement to NEXUS, a private multi-million dollar corporation with an annual budget of around $38 million dollars. (That's $38 million dollars spending money each year!) So the rich corporation doesn't have to pay taxes. Who does? Us. We do. The county commissioners you will soon be voting for (or hopefully against) were just as foolish with our tax dollars, giving NEXUS 7 free years. Meanwhile, people like us - older folks on small fixed incomes saw a huge surge in our taxes. Somehow, it doesn't seem quite fair. And by the way, the surge isn't working....
What REALLY irks me, and should irk you as well, is that NEXUS got it's $38 million dollar annual budget primarily through our tax dollars in the first place. (One wonders, with the current crash of Wall Street, how NEXUS investments are doing...) It's the same kind of crap going on throughout our country which has caused our economy to fail. Anyway, for months I've been trying to light a fire, to illuminate the dark side of this NEXUS issue - so you could SEE what they don't want you to see. And to be honest, (and I always am), some of you haven't been too Minnesota Nice to me. Some of your personal attacks (including threats) on Hannabelle make Sarah Barracuda seem like Cleo the Goldfish in comparison. Yes, I wanted to protect our rights (including yours!). True, I didn't want sex offenders in MY backyard. But I also wanted my fellow citizens to stand up against the tyranny of our local government - the STUPIDITY of our local government - in order to make Onamia a better place to live. (You didn't. Some of you still have Sondra Erickson signs on your yards! And, of course, I now understand why the term "Bradbury Idiots" certainly does apply to some of my neighbors...)
Now, (in I told you so mode), not only can you see it, you will also feel the effects - in your checkbook, but thanks to George Bush, you're feeling it on a much larger scale. You're feeling it in your savings account, in your gas tanks, at the grocery store (Sorry Bill. We shop at Cashwise in St. Cloud. Better selection, NICER PEOPLE, better prices... worth the trip!) This system - Onamianomics - DOESN'T work, folks. Wealth doesn't "trickle down" to ordinary people like you and me. The only thing that trickles down is the BS that they tell us to keep us subdued. To keep us distracted... Meanwhile, rich retiring CEOs walk away with gigantic "Golden Parachutes" and are set for life while we struggle. We know why we need money - to fill the propane tank for a cold Minnesnowda winter what's a comin'. To pay our bills. What do they need so much money for? Sometimes they sue ordinary people who have the nerve to call them "Poopsie." What a way to get your jollies... Some sport, huh. (I guess I hurt his feelings by rejecting him. It's true. I do not want this kind of person in my life. But that's another discussion for another day... i.e. Psycho CEO Day)
Sondra Erickson supported NEXUS but doesn't like to talk about how keeping NEXUS from leaving the community has only helped a few while hurting everyone else. Other irresponsible "geniuses": Jack Edmonds, Phil Peterson, and Frank Courteau. All are running for re-election. In the city, Onamians can vote against Jerome Kryzer, and make sure that mayor Larry Milton does NOT retain power. Former councilman Mark Loch's position is open this election. I can't vote in Onamia, but some of you can. I'm hopeful that the increasing number of Kulick-Jackson lawn signs are an indication that many people in Mille Lacs County have indeed seen the light, and realize that its time for a change.
Change begins at home, and continues up the ladder. Its time to say "Thanks, but no thanks" to Norm Coleman and John McCain. They are truly "bridges to nowhere."
Yes indeedy I urge you to vote for Gail Kulick-Jackson for state representative, Al Franken for US senate, and of course, vote for Barack Obama and Joe Biden (that's a no-brainer for people with brains). Show the world that YES WE CAN because YES WE CARE!