LETTER: Vote no to tax exemptions
If you haven't voted yet, take a minute and consider the following.
Okaloosa County and some cities are asking the citizens to approve a 10-year tax exemption for new businesses that would relocate in this area. Sounds great, doesn't it? Well, if you listened to the candidates for the Okaloosa County Commission, each one of them preaches "more business,” “taking care of the run off water," "problems with traffic," and "the preservation of the quality of life."
So far so good. But none of them nor the cities or the county officials explain the problems that big new businesses create when they relocate to the Southern part of the county.
The big businesses overload the infrastructure with their needs for roads, water, commodities and services.
They, i.e. the labor force that they hire, create even greater traffic jams for both the locals and the tourists.
How long will it be before the tourists find another place where they don't have to spend half a day stuck in traffic going to the beach or shopping?
The more paved lots, the less open land there is available to absorb the rains. The results are flooding and uncontrolled water run offs.
With the advent of this "new prosperity" the "new bubble" is created.
Prices of homes and real estate will be inflated and we, the locals, will see our taxes go up to pay for extra police, firemen and numerous other services that the new businesses expect to be provided by the cities or the county.
And if, and when, "the bubble" bursts... well, they will fold or go bankrupt. They will relocate somewhere else. The owners won't shed too many tears.
They haven't paid any taxes all this time. And when the real estate prices go down our taxes will still remain high.
So who wants to talk about "the quality of life” now? Vote no to tax exemptions.