It’s All In HOW You Say It

After looking at the ballot explanation on the issue of raising the Ada County Highway District registration fees, we tend to agree with a reader who told us the language is overly optimistic.

In the explanation of a “yes” vote, the ballot says it will “replace the current fees…”
TRUTH IS: a “yes” vote will actually DOUBLE the current fees. Yeah, sure it will also REPLACE the current fees, but they never mention the current fees.

In the explanation for a “no” vote it says such action will “eliminate more than $4 million in annual funding for transportation improvements.”
TRUTH IS: a “no” vote will also save taxpayers $4 million in taxes that were set to expire by law in 2010.

This may seem like a picky bit of semantics, but we suspect the manipulation of the language will trigger caution and distrust among some voters.

The big problem we see is the loopholes for rental cars and fleets of commercial vehicles registered OUTSIDE Ada County just to get around the higher taxes here. We tried to come up with some numbers and the folks at the State DMV said they had no interest in determining where a vehicle is “domiciled” because the only place it makes a difference is in Ada County.

The GUARDIAN can’t help but offer the reason for ACHD’s budget problems is GROWTH. Sadly, ACHD officials are not the ones who have worked to attract people and businesses in efforts to increase the population of the County. For instance, the Park Center Bridge is a direct result of Harris Ranch growth that has created the need for a new fire station, school, and other city services. GROWTHOPHOBES are aware the problem is caused by the tax breaks for businesses, the efforts of Team Dave and other local governments advertising in out of state publications.

If the Chamber of Commerce put their $5 million ad budget into roads, the problem would be cured–slower growth and decent roads with no new taxes.

Guv Butch Otter recently suggested a “mileage tax” at the state level and surprise, surprise, a study is underway. The DAILY PAPER says the University of Iowa just got a $16 million grant to do a “mileage tax” study. You can volunteer to have your mileage and movements monitored. Contact 866-363-1975 or visit ROADUSERSTUDY.

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. I already voted and was fairly alarmed when I read the wording. It absolutely was not fair and neutral, and I suspect the measure will pass due to the wording.

    It’s like when the Republican pollsters call you and say, “Are you tired of the way the tax and spend Democrats have ruined our economy?” (Democrats use the language too) How else are you supposed to answer a question like that?

  2. Does anyone have a link to the specific text of this issue on the ballot?

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