(everybody sing!) ... if it's the last thing we ever do!
I'm speaking of course, about living in Montgomery County, Maryland - a jurisdiction that I have called home for my entire life... a county whose elected leaders have never seen a tax they didn't like!
At a time when inflation is up, home values are down and recession is looming, the County Executive and County Council are bickering over how deeply to stick it to homeowners. Now, I've been covering these kind of squabbles for years, so none of this comes as a surprise - but I can't help but wonder what geniuses approved what amounts to an 8 percent pay increase for most county employees. I've been reading in the paper about how county workers are the "most precious resource" the county has. I have no beef with the services I receive, but somehow I think county TAXPAYERS - the people who foot the bill - are somewhat more precious than employees. What world do these people live in where they think an 8 percent pay hike is normal, even in GOOD economic times?
Like I said, none of this is surprising to me in the Peoples' Republic of Montgomery County, but what's really burning my britches today is the fact that as much as the county likes to increase spending, it balks at efforts to generate any new revenue that does not come straight from my pocket! County Executive Ike Leggett has shot down a proposal to open county liquor stores on Sundays - a simple step that could put another million dollars a year in the county's coffers. Leggett has shot down the idea, saying the potential social ills could outweigh any financial benefit.
Ike - I don't know about you, but whether the liquor stores are open on Sunday or not, the rising cost of living here is enough to drive me to drink!