Notes from Sam Adams Town Hall on Taxes

Portland Commissioner Sam Adams is floating these tax ideas:

– City gas tax
– Street Maintenance Fee (40% on homeowners and 60% on businesses)
– Property tax measure;
– “Hummer tax” with a surcharge on mileage;
– Higher parking fees.

Here is what one attender of his town hall meeting had to say…

Last week we attended one of Sam Adam’s “town halls” on the “transportation crisis”. Lots of numbers, scare tactics, ill-defined terms and survey guaranteed statistics were liberally distributed but the REAL agenda did not dawn on us until this morning. The methodology of the meeting, the structured intention of finding out what our opposition points might be and the “tell all” questionnaire at the end all led up to one “purpose”.

We were skillfully led through the maze of chaos comments regarding “relieving congestion which costs $412 million in lives” to the ultimate and uncontestable conclusion. We have a choice of four degrees of taxation we MUST pay in the next 10 years and it’s really only a matter of how it’s done and how painful it will be. Never mind that not one proposed ‘fix’ will actually alleviate congestion or save a single one of the $412 million worth of lives.

We were bowled, rolled and controlled with nary an option or an opinion heard outside the pre-programmed outcome. No “if” these are real problems or “if” these taxes need to be collected, but when, how much and in what way will we pay for yet more fixes to problems that don’t exist while completely ignoring and therefore exacerbating those that do.

CAUTION: Terms that cannot be clearing defined in your mind become roadblocks to cognitive thinking and analysis. Watch out for words like “backlog” which are used over and over again. You ‘think’ you know what it means but it is used as an overlay for so many catch-all concepts, your mind buckles under the inability to understand what part of the problem he is actually talking about.