Taxes, School Budgets And Fresh Coffee

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

First I want to agree with Jay Reed’s recent expression of appreciation to the Chattanoogan.com for the opportunity we have to share opinions like this.  And I want to thank the many people who have shared their concerns about our community, especially on the topics of taxes and our schools.  I also want to thank the elected officials who will be making decisions in the near future related to all this - I don’t envy you a bit.  I have three kids in our Hamilton County Public School system (thank you teachers and administrators), and I pay property taxes in Hamilton County, and here are my thoughts.

My first suggestion is to put a hold on any tax increase until we figure out what, if anything, should receive more money.  Just throwing more money at the whole educational system is a foolish way to try to get improvements.  It might make sense to invest in the whole stock market if you are happy with overall stock market trends, but it does not make sense to throw more money into the whole local educational business if we aren’t happy with its overall results and direction.  

Since there are a limited amount of dollars that the local population can muster up, it seems to me we should determine what isn’t working and end those things and invest in the programs and strategies that are succeeding and thriving.  Hard decisions need to be made and I would rather see successful programs expanded.  Shift dollars from what isn’t working to what is working.  Basically yes, I’m talking about outcomes.  Positive outcomes from principals, schools, and programs get more funding and are replicated.

My second suggestion has to do with taxes, and specifically with property taxes.  First off, I would like to thank all those people and organizations who have recently commented and offered to pay more.  Whatever our elected officials decide in the near future, there will be a certain percentage of our population that thinks even more money should be going into our schools and they personally are willing to pay more.  Immediately, if not sooner, someone in the school system should create a website where people can go and contribute one-time or recurring donations to our school system.  It’s not just a few people!  There is probably 10-20 percent of our population that see the need, have the means, and are willing to help pay more than what is required.  Let them!  Maybe they could even select where they want their donation to be allocated to, such as teachers, buildings, the superintendent, sports, arts or whatever.  

My other suggestion about property taxes is to take the McDonald’s senior coffee approach (cheaper coffee for seniors).  We should take a look at the average age that income flattens and then decreases and allow all seniors when they hit that certain determined age to ask for the “senior discount” which would automatically freeze their property taxes, or even better trigger an automatic decrease in their property taxes by a set percentage, maybe 2-3 percent per year.  Certainly you can pay full price for your “coffee” especially if you see the need and have the means, but if you choose, you could ask for and get the "senior coffee" property tax plan.

David Shinn
Chattanooga


Vols Plan For Defeating Chattanooga

The Infrastructure Rebuild Budget Is Akin To A Band Aid

Debate Or Hoax Fest?


I read in present tense on the Chattanoogan.com this morning and I see two stories about water issues in Chattanooga. My wife and I, amongst many others, are constrained in work. My two daughters ... (click for more)

The third Democrat presidential debate was last night and here’s their strategy-beat Donald Trump, gun confiscation, beat Donald Trump, open the borders, beat Donald Trump, boundless free stuff ... (click for more)


Opinion

Vols Plan For Defeating Chattanooga

The Infrastructure Rebuild Budget Is Akin To A Band Aid

I read in present tense on the Chattanoogan.com this morning and I see two stories about water issues in Chattanooga. My wife and I, amongst many others, are constrained in work. My two daughters are out of work today because of the absence of this utility. The water company budget on infrastructure rebuild and repair is akin to a band aid brought to a bike crash on a gravel road. ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Tennessee American Water Begins To Restore Water Service

Tennessee American Water successfully completed repairs to the impacted water main around 4 a.m. and has begun the process of restoring the system. Officials said, "The return to normal operating conditions will occur slowly and return last to customers at the highest elevations within the system, such as Lookout Mountain and Elder Mountain. We anticipate that most of the system ... (click for more)

Darrell Hill, 20, Shot And Killed On Dahlia Street; 3 Teenagers Arrested

Darrell Hill, 20, was shot and killed on Dahlia Street Thursday afternoon. Three teenagers have been arrested for the homicide. At approximately 12:14 p.m., Chattanooga Police responded to a p erson shot call in the 3900 block of Dahlia Street. Upon arrival, police located the victim lying on the ground with an apparent gunshot wound. Hamilton County EMS pronounced him ... (click for more)

Sports

UT Manhandles Mocs 45-0

The Chattanooga Mocs made the short trip up I-75 falling 45-0 at Tennessee. The Vols took advantage of early struggles to put the game away early. A big return on the opening kickoff set Tennessee up with a short field. It took six plays to go 41 yards with the initial tally coming on a 13-yard Ty Chandler run. The next score came less than two minutes later with Brandon Johnson ... (click for more)

UTC's Gerdes Leads Mocs In Chattanooga Collegiate Clay Court Championships

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga junior Niklas Gerdes led the Mocs men’s tennis team on the second day of the Chattanooga Collegiate Clay Court Championships at Manker Patten. The Geestland, Germany, native advanced to the finals of the doubles draw and the singles semifinals with wins today. Gerdes started the morning session with a 6-0 doubles win with sophomore Tomas ... (click for more)