Unfair Property Taxes Create Hardship For Homeowners

Dear Editor:

Lawmakers continue to leave the hardship of unfair property taxes on homeowners, some of whom are losing their homes to tax sales. Young and old are suffering because legislators manipulate their conscience to justify unfair property taxes. Each finds excuses, or blames the others to justify this most unfair tax.

Teachers continue to strike, causing hardship for students and parents. The news media and others only mention salaries, not the total cost of a teacher which is over $100 per hour. Many teachers are making a salary over $80,000 plus 4.23% of salary for retirement, $50,000 life insurance, about $20,000 in healthcare, 7.05% social security, half hour paid lunch, ten paid holidays, ten sick days, fourteen weeks paid vacation, sabbatical leave, and payment for educational courses to increase pay grade. These benefits may be more or less, depending on the district. You can get an accurate total cost per teacher by requesting it from the school Superintendent.

There are 185 days teachers are in school, with the average workday consisting of 7.5 hours. Of those 7.5 hours, 4.5 hours are spent teaching, a half hour is dedicated to lunch, and the remainder of the time serves as prep time. The average worker puts in 2,000 hours per year, while the average teacher puts in about 1,100 hours per year with occasional early dismissals and late starts. If you are seeking further clarification, you obtain information from you local school district’s Superintendent.

Teachers and law makers, must stop manipulating your conscience and realize how many people are being hurt with this burdening costs. People have the right to vote at 18 years of age. The burden can be lessened on homeowners, if everyone age 21 and older paid school taxes, whether they are a homeowner or not. Everyone enjoys the sports, extracurricular activities, and quality education provided by school districts, not just homeowners.

I would pay about $50 in taxes if everyone who is considered an adult had to pay, rather than the approximate $5,000 I currently pay. The Constitution states that we will pay for an education, and if everyone over age 21 paid their share, there would be fewer properties lost to tax sale. I am encouraging you to do what is right, and pass tax reform. It only took overnight for legislators to pass their pay raise, it should not take much longer than overnight to pass tax reform. Just because one owns a home, it does not mean that they have an overabundance of means to pay into high taxes year after year. Sincerely,

Ed Tomko Dorrance Township