The opinion piece on San Luis Obispo's Measure G-20 ("A path forward," Oct. 8) is long on empty words and short on specific facts. First off, there's no guarantee that any of this tax increase will go to any of the eight services mentioned. Once collected, the money will be mixed into the general fund and spent the way the council dictates. Secondly, the authors didn't mention that this measure will also extend that existing half cent sales tax, making the impact 1.5 percent and not the 1 percent as they state.
But that isn't the basic fundamental flaw in this proposed measure. We have all suffered from the financial impacts caused by the COVID-19 virus, the stay-at-home orders, and closed or limited business activities. And we have been forced into making financial decisions to keep our heads above water. We have cut our spending, we have reevaluated our spending priorities, we have disrupted our normal family routines, and we have accepted the new financial normal. So why can't the city do the same?
Why is it that every financial impact or shortfall faced by the city is always answered with a tax/fee increase? Why is it that the city can't do what we have been forced to do? Why is it that the city can't reduce its spending or adjust priorities to manage the issue? Why is it that they always turn to more taxes, more fees? Why is it that they always threaten us with less service if we don't comply? And why is it that when a new tax/fee is approved, and the financial crisis is long gone, they never remove the increase?
As for me, I say the city should tighten its belt first, just as we have had to. They should adjust their own budgets to match their income, just as we have had to. They should take more interest in how this tax will impact their citizens. And, as for G-20, until the city shows us specific cost-saving measures to meet the decline in revenues, I encourage everyone to vote no on this measure. As for the other cities in the county pushing these tax increases, the same encouragement is offered.
San Luis Obispo