Citizens successful in preventing tax increase

Published 6:44 am Friday, September 7, 2018

Dear Editor,

Last Thursday evening dozens of concerned Boyle County citizens gathered in the high school library for a hearing on the tax increase under consideration by the board. The weight of their testimony, backed by 448 signed protest petitions, largely from western Boyle County prevailed.

During an hour-long program, the superintendent laid out his ideas on the schools’ fiscal needs. Those comments were countered by citizen challenges, testing many vague, even today unexplained budget line items and calling for serious belt-tightening by the Boyle School Board.

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There was certainly passion on the part of taxpayers. No longer are we willing to accept questionable increases without examining the issues at hand. Nonetheless, an atmosphere of mutual respect set the tone for the meeting.

Success came because volunteers walked the county, seeking taxpayer support. Voters were willing to “sign on the dotted line” against one more increase in school funding. That was further punctuated upon learning that the Boyle County School System has a “rainy day fund” of more than $7,000,000 in reserves!

Citizen action through voter involvement was the key to victory. A precedent was set last Thursday night. Boyle Countians now realize how effective their collective voices can be. On future tax matters, whether from schools, the city or county, when rate hikes come into question, many others will assuredly join the fight.

In closing, because of diligence on the part of all who came forward, we the residents of Boyle County will NOT be facing another costly tax. We will NOT suffer mandated  Belt-tightening.

Tom V. Ellis