Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Boston Tea Party Deja Vu!

Up here, in the land of the Boston Tea Party, the anti-tax activists are pushing a measure that would remove income tax in our state. Talk about an item that would impact libraries! Mass Libraries Association is pushing hard against it (here). Public libraries, school libraries and libraries in state colleges and universities would all be impacted in a major way. Not to speak of those little items such as roads, police, firefighters, hospitals & emergency squads, schools, etc. We'll see if the well-intentioned people descended from the patriots who threw British tea in the harbor rather than pay the import tax come through now....

It's one thing to throw off shackles when you have no say in the government which is housed far away. It's something else when you have town meetings you can go to, where you can have a say in how your taxes get spent. The folks who think they are going to skip down the road free, free, free if income taxes are repealed haven't thought this through. States that don't have income taxes, like Florida, Alaska or New Hampshire, have other mechanisms in place that yield state income to fund the roads, police, emergency personnel and equipment, schools, and libraries that our income taxes are funding. You can't yank the plug without giving time to put a different system in place -- we'll have chaos in the streets, most literally.

Keep your fingers crossed. The library community is buzzing and rallying, as are the school folks. We'll see what happens.

See Vote No On Question 1 for a bit of info from the non-library opponents to the measure. The decoration of the Boston Tea Party is courtesy of the Architect of the Capitol, at I wonder what the original engraver was thinking about with the placement of that map?


Marie S. Newman said...

I grew up in Boston, and still remember driving up to New Hampshire with my parents to buy certain things, like cigarettes, that were heavily taxed in Massachusetts. Thanks for the interesting post.

Meg said...

Oh dear! Count my soon-to-be Massachusettsian (that's probably not the word, is it?) self as heartily against this measure. Having lived in a state without an income tax for the past six years, I can definitely tell the difference and I know which I prefer.