Letters to the Editor

Simple ideas for cutting Island County spending

To Island County spenders: I am boiling mad. The county is broke, the state is broke, the country is broke and you want to spend even more. I have news for you, there is no money, we are broke.

For example, Mary Tallman wants the public to buy 664 acres of private property so she can ride her horse. Lady, buy a horse trailer and go ride in the zillion acres already public. 50 percent of all the land west of the Mississippi is already government owned, there is most likely some you can use.

They want to expand Greenbank Farm. It already busted the Port, how much of a hint do you need? If you want to expand it, come up with a positive return on investment plan, then I’ll listen. Otherwise, make what you already have pay, and I’m not talking feel-good Kumbaya stuff, I’m talking about a black balance in the checkbook, or privatize it.

Conservation Futures — Spending taxpayers money taking more land off the tax rolls. Yeah, that sounds really nice, I’m relentlessly being taxed off my land, but at least I’ll have a public forest to go pitch a tent to live in. We can do nicely without any more public land in spite of what the do-gooders think. Paying full price in a down market is another example of how easy it is to spend someone else’s money. $250,000 to conserve farm land? Hmmm, maybe if the farmers kept the money instead of paying these yahoos, they could afford to conserve their own land... Besides, 50 percent of all land again...

The commissioners say they have cut to the bone: How about this? Somebody suggested making the transit system pay for itself. Well, I think we have subsidized these parasites enough. Make the system pay for itself with user fees and keep your hand out of my pocket. I don’t care what kind of obscure bookkeeping shenanigans you use around the county, the money still comes from my pocket. If the county (city, state, feds) spend it they took it from me to do it.

The payroll has been cut by 50 employees, that means there is a lot of floor space not needed (50X100 square foot/office = 5000 square feet), either consolidate, lease, or sell it, preferably sell and get it back on the tax rolls.

Make the County Fair self supporting, as in 100 percent. If they can’t and volunteers won’t, sell it and put the land back on the tax rolls. (Is there a theme showing up here?)

Give all the parks to volunteers, if they don’t use and maintain them, OK, all together now, sell them and put the land back on the tax rolls...

Quit building guard rails along the roads. People, drive your car and quit texting, phoning, eating, fiddling with the radio... and keep your car on the road.

Stop mowing the ditches. There was a gal in a snit a week or two ago about this not being done, tell her to take care of it. If nothing else, the weeds and grass will cushion the cars of the idiots running off the road. (See previous item.)

Split the county in half. Only a politician wearing his headphones too tight could see the benefit to having two parts of a county 60 road miles apart. Turn Camano Island loose to make their own county or join Snohomish, or whatever. Maintaining at least two of everything is stupid and expensive.

This is getting rather long so I’ll end, maybe I’ll write part 2 if I don’t get tarred and feathered. I don’t mind taxes for essential services, but none of the above fit in that category.

Rick Kiser

Oak Harbor

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