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November 26th, 2020
L&T Opinions Page

LETTER TO THE EDITOR, Roger Jacquart, Liberal


I am writing to voice my concern on Focus on the Future and the 1-cent sales tax which funds this committee. I hear and see many ads telling how wonderful Focus on the Future is. These ads state they are paid for by the Focus on the Future, which is a misleading statement.

The reality is because Focus on the Future is funded through sales taxes, thus the ads are paid for by the taxpayer.

My most recent issue of the newspaper contained an eight-page insert trying to garner support for the sales tax. If Focus on the Future is not honest about who is paying for their ads, what else are we not being told?

Since the inception of the 1-cent sales tax, $125 million has been collected for Focus on the Future which becomes a slush fund that can be spent by a few people on what they deem is best as opposed to what the citizens of Liberal actually want. It is so easy to spend someone else’s money.

A few years ago a recreation center was voted down, yet we have a huge one which will take hundreds of thousands of dollars each year to maintain, insure and staff. How did this happen without a vote? When you have a slush fund it doesn’t matter what the voters say. 

Focus on the Future is a group of people who think they know what’s best for Liberal even better than the voters do. The problem is that taxpayers are funding everything without any input. Recently, SCCC announced it supports the Focus on the Future tax. They are one of the entities which benefits from the tax; thus, they have a vested interest in continuing this tax.

Internet shopping has closed many local businesses because they cannot compete when they are taxed higher than the Internet companies. The city does not receive sales tax revenue on very many online purchases and local businesses cannot compete when they must charge sales tax.

Perhaps eliminating the 1-cent Focus on the Future tax would boost the economy by helping local businesses stay open, thus employing local residents and giving back to the community.

I feel like it’s time for the taxpayers to take control of our own money and eliminate the 1-cent sales tax altogether. Vote for what you think is best, but most importantly, VOTE.

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