I am as dismayed as Tom Brunt and the Chamber of Commerce members at the Waste Management Authority's (WMA) long awaited schedule of user fees.
To add a heavy tax on "just about everything that comes into the territory, from food at 7 cents a pound and clothing to 12 cents a pound" shall constitute severe financial hardship on all of us who are already paying above average stateside costs for everything we purchase in our islands. I am not against a user fee tariff increase for public sewer users that is affordable, but I am totally against a user fee for the other basic necessities.
Are they out of their minds? Look at all the increases that we already pay for: property, gas, groceries, WAPA utilities, ferries and the basic, antiquated Innovative telephone and cable services, to name a few. What do we pay taxes for? What are we getting in return? What are those elderly who only have a fixed income/their social security to live upon going to do? What about hardworking families with 2 and 3 jobs just trying to get by? What about all of us that already pay too much for too little?
Maybe our Senators could rescind their pay increases they voted themselves at the last moment to, in some small way, alleviate the burden on the taxpayers and their constituents? After all, they still have their perks.
Another source of funding must be found or pretty soon none of us shall be able to afford to live in the islands that are home to us. I hope the PSC shall just not rubber stamp this as they have other increases in the past. It's time to speak up and voice your concerns before it's too late!
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