Opinion

Editorial: Keep your tax money on island

The spirit of Christmas is free, but supporting your cities and county during the holidays is a matter of spending your money locally as much as possible.

As the Great Recession digs in its heels, Whidbey Island businesses and towns are in dire need of financial help. Island County has been cutting spending for three years with no end in sight, Oak Harbor is finally beginning to feel the pinch, and Langley and Coupeville are cutting back each year.

Voters time after time have refused to raise taxes and even threw out new taxes instigated by the Legislature. This makes it especially important to spend your money locally so your tax dollars support services ranging from police protection to senior services and transit.

Oak Harbor has its big box stores and a variety of small, quaint businesses downtown; Coupeville and Langley and well-known tourist destinations where the shelves are stocked with unique gift items; our many personal service businesses provide gifts of experiences; and Whidbey Island’s many artists are selling their wares in galleries and at numerous special events. Every sale brings in tax money to help keep our local government functioning and our businesses open for another year.

The elections are over for this year, but you can still vote with your wallet by spending your dollars where you live, in Island County. Snohomish and Skagit counties can do just fine without our money.

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