“Read my lips! No new taxes!”
– President George H.W. Bush (aka Bush I)
Last fall the Hamilton County Commissioners put a tax levy on the ballot increase the county sales tax from 6.5% to 7.0. It failed.
Today, as reported in The Cincinnati Enquirer,
There will be no jail tax levy on the May primary ballot, two of the three Hamilton County commissioners said this afternoon.
The commissioners were scheduled to act Thursday morning on County Administrator Patrick Thompson’s plan to raise the county’s sales tax from 6.5 percent to 7 percent for the next five years – followed by a permanent reduction to 6.75 percent – to build a new 1,800 jail in Camp Washington.
It’s probably a good thing that the County Commissioners decided not to place the increase on the ballot, it should and would fail again.
Maybe if the county voters hadn’t been so burned on a sales tax levy for both a football stadium and baseball field, it might stand more of a chance. In that case, however, Hamilton County residents were deceived and robbed in an attempt to provide corporate welfare to the Cincinnati Bengals and Cincinnati Reds.
Secondly, is it possible there might be a sufficient amount of “beds” in the county prison system if people weren’t imprisoned for simple drug possession? I don’t have the statistics at hand, but I suspect that maybe too many folks who really don’t need to be in jail are sitting there wasting our county resources instead of “paying their debt to society” out in the community where they belong.
President Bush, the First, wasn’t able to keep his word, and I have much less control over taxation in Hamilton County than he does, but I’ll do my part to campaign against a new tax.