Thursday, November 30, 2006

Total TN Gas Tax = 40 cents/gal

Senator Norris doesn't think we, the citizens of Tennessee, are paying enough gas tax. The current State gas tax is 21.4 cents and the Federal portion is 18.4 cents per gallon.

So, we are now paying 40 cents/gallon. How much more would you be willing and able to pay?

Monday, November 27, 2006

Poll: 85% of TNseans opposed State Property Tax

In a Jan. 7, 2001 Tennessean article Bonna de la Cruz reported on a Mason-Dixon Poll:

"When Tennesseans were asked whether they favor a state property tax, 85% said no and just 7% said yes."

Recently the State Comptroller, John Morgan went public with a plan for a state property tax.

Surely Mr Morgan is aware of this 2001 poll. Why then would he promote a "reform" plan so clearly and overwhelmingly unpopular? Hmmmmmm???

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Taxpayer dollars funding higher taxes

This report from the Chattanooga-TimesFreePress is just another depressing example of government moving farther away the citizens. Rather than making their case directly to the local citizens for higher taxes and more money, the local bureaucrats and politicians find it much easier to go directly to their friendly bureaucrat in the Federal Government. Unlike local elected officials, the DC bureaucrats have dispensed with any pretense that they are answerable to the people.

I commented earlier on a similar report from Channel 2 Reporter Trent Seibert on a report from The Tennessee Center for Policy Research.


Interesting new video web site - www.LiveLeak.com

Live: broadcast while happening or being performed
Leak: to disclose secret, esp. official, information anonymously, as to the news media

German WeatherLady can't stop laughing

We Owe More than we make

"...the Center for American Progress, a liberal-minded think tank, has
crunched data from the Federal Reserve and found that Americans for
the first time owe more money than they make.

According to the center, average household debt levels topped average
after-tax income by more than 29 percent as of this summer. Moreover,
the average family is now spending 14.4 percent of its disposable
income on debt repayments -- the largest share since the Fed began
collecting such data in 1980."

Link

British Bureaucrats lose it completely

Link

"A SPICY sausage known as the Welsh Dragon will have to be renamed after trading standards’ officers warned manufacturers that they could face prosecution because it does not contain dragon."


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

60k and 50k Senior income limit proposed

Bills are starting to be filed for the 105th session of the Tennessee General Assembly starting January 9, 2007.

Two bills have been proposed to implement the Senior Property Tax Relief just passed as a Constitutional Amendment. The Norris Bill proposes a $50,000 income limit and the Maddox/Jackson Bill proposes a $60,000 income limit. Anyone over 65 whose income from all sources is above these limits would not qualify for the property tax freeze when and if their local city/county implemented the freeze.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Madisonville drops Annexation after citizens protest

Unlike Murfreesboro, Jackson and countless other TN cities who don't care if citizens are opposed to annexation, City of Madisonville alderman actually listen and they voted to "forget" about the annexation. The one alderman who voted to continue with the annexation said the other aldermen should have supported the planning commission instead of the citizens???

Link

"But the crowd wasn't to be swayed. One woman declared her house
insurance was only $500 to start with and when asked for a show of
hands who didn't want to be annexed into the city, every hand in the
room shot up.

Faced with such overwhelming opposition, Moser made the motion to
"forget about the annexation." Alderman Irad Lee seconded the motion and all voted to drop the idea except for Bill Spradlin.

Georgia lawmakers consider nixing income tax

Link

House Republicans meeting to elect their leaders for the coming legislative session pledged Monday to "dismantle the current tax code" and consider scrapping the politically unpopular personal income tax.

Republicans have already established several study committees and other initiatives to look into reforming the state's tax structure.

"And when (House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Larry O'Neal) gets to that portion on the personal income tax, maybe we'll just leave that section out and we won't have that anymore in this state," House Majority Leader Jerry Keen, R-St. Simons Island, said to loud applause during a GOP caucus meeting Monday.

House Speaker Glenn Richardson, R-Hiram, said after the caucus meeting that income tax revenues make up about half the state's budget, which totals $16.7 billion in the fiscal year that ends June 30. He suggested that the plan could involve elimination of some of the exemptions to the sales tax.

Just doing away with the sales-tax exemptions wouldn't be enough, said Alan Essig, the executive director of the nonpartisan Georgia Policy and Budget Institute, which supports closing sales-tax loopholes as part of tax reform.

Monday, November 13, 2006

61% think they hurt the Economy, 16% say help

Link

November 11, 2006

There are many reasons that Republicans lost control of Congress last week. On one level, people just didn’t think Congress was doing its job very well.
However, it is also clear that the GOP lost its edge on an issue that
Ronald Reagan once claimed solely for the Republicans—taxes.

Americans today still hold views similar to those that brought Reagan to the
White House—61% believe that tax hikes are bad for the economy. Just
16% believe they help the economy (see crosstabs).
But, in the Reagan era, Republicans were seen as the protector of tax
cuts while Democrats were painted as always seeking more revenue for
government. A Rasmussen Reports survey finds that the distinction is no
longer clear in the public mind.

Heading into Election
2006, 45% of voters believed that taxes would go up if Democrats won
control of Congress. Just 12% thought Democrats in control would lead
to lower taxes.

However, while concern about tax hikes
remained on voters’ minds, they didn’t see Republicans as all that
different. Thirty-two percent (32%) of voters believed that Republican
control of Congress would lead to higher taxes and just 13% thought the
GOP would enact further tax cuts.

Among the general
public, Republicans remain more zealous than others about the benefits
of lower taxes—74% of Republicans believe that higher taxes hurt the
economy. But, that view is shared by a majority of Democrats (51%) and
unaffiliated (57%) voters.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Newspaper's Cut-it-out tax protest coupon

Don't think I have ever seen anything like THIS before. The Edmonton Sun newspaper is publishing a Cut-it-out coupon that readers can cut out and send to the newspaper to protest a proposed property tax hike. The newspaper then forwards the coupons on to the mayor and council.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Rutherford Cntians ask city to stop being a BULLY

Here is the report on NewsChannel 5 from last night.

Fox 17 Report on the Charter Amendment

Here is a the Fox 17 Report on the Charter Amendment from last night.

Spending gone Buck Wild - Tues Nov 14 at 5:30

This is a great opportunity to hear from an expert on the painful details about how the Republican controlled Congress spent our money like there was no tomorrow. I encourage you to attend if at all possible. It's at the Brentwood Holiday Inn just a few minutes South of Downtown Nashville. Survey after survey has confirmed that voters want limited government and lower taxes. Many in the Republican Congress forgot about these core principles and this author, whose book was published before the elections, was more of a prophet than he could have realized. PLEASE come, its at 5:30PM at the Brentwood Holiday Inn on Tuesday, Nov. 14...see you there.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Using taxpayer funded websites for incumbents

As more governments use the web to offer public services, more politicians are using the taxpayer's money to promote themselves on government web sites and increase their power as incumbents.

If you take a look at the city and county websites on the Tennessee Tax Revolt Taxpayer Information Center you find MANY with pictures, and videos which are very thinly veiled promos for incumbent politicians. One of the most obvious and amazing examples is www.BrockHill.org. I don't know if taxpayer money is being used for this site but looking at the content of the website, it is clear that its intent is to be a website for Cumberland County. It has a re-elect Brock Hill graphic at the bottom of the page and I could not find any other web site for Cumberland County. This website is listed as the official Cumberland County website at both the County Mayors Association website and the State of Tennessee website.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

NTU rundown of Tax Related Ballot Measures

 
Out of the 92 state ballot measures reviewed in our 2006 General Election Guide, 79 were non-bond related questions.

Here's how those measures fared (based on yet-to-be-certified results):

Total # Approved # Rejected
Measures that would lower taxes/limit government 46 32 14
Measures that would raise taxes/expand government 33 12 21


Among important taxpayer wins:

Alaska: Rejection of a new tax on natural resources

Arizona: Passage of the Taxpayer Protection Act

California: Rejection of higher cigarette taxes, new energy taxes, a $50 property tax increase, and a publicly-funded campaign finance system

Colorado: strengthening of the rights of citizens to propose ballot measures, and approval of putting a two year hold on former lawmakers before they can lobby

Idaho: rejection of a 1-cent sales tax increase

Louisiana: approval of stopping municipalities from taxing cars on a value basis

Michigan: rejection of a minimum funding level for education

Missouri: rejection of an 80 cent-per-pack cigarette tax increase, and approval of stripping felon lawmakers of their pensions

South Carolina: approval of a restriction on property taxes

Finally, approval of eminent domain reforms in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oregon, and South Carolina.

Thanks to everyone who helped!!

Thanks to everyone who helped with the petition drive to place Charter Amendment No. 1 on the ballot. 77% of Davidson County voters agreed that taxpaying voters should be able to say whether they are willing and able to bear the burden of property tax rate increases. Here is the precinct breakdown. Haven't looked at it real close but on first examination it looks like every precinct in the county approved the amendment.

Requesting Your Medical Insurance Records

How to Request your medical insurance records from the Medical Insurance Bureau.

Requesting Your Medical Insurance Records

How to request your medical Records from the Medical Insurance Bureau.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Carnival of Taxes #6

Great Round-up of Tax blogging.

YES on Metro Nashville Charter Amend. No. 1

YES on Metro Nashville Charter Amend. No. 1

Rational rebuttal of the apocalyptic Stern Report

Link
"Sir Nicholas Stern's report on the economics of climate change, which was published last week, says that the debate is over. It isn't. There are more greenhouse gases in the air than there were, so the world should warm a bit, but that's as far as the "consensus" goes. After the recent hysteria, you may not find the truth easy to believe. So you can find all my references and detailed calculations here.

The Royal Society says there's a worldwide scientific consensus. It brands Apocalypse-deniers as paid lackeys of coal and oil corporations. I declare my interest: I once took the taxpayer's shilling and advised Margaret Thatcher, FRS, on scientific scams and scares. Alas, not a red cent from Exxon."

Interesting Graph of Senate Race Poll Trends

Street Art of Barcelona

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Tennessean reports on Ballot problem

This Tennessean article from today's paper details the problems we found with voters not being notified about the correction notice for our Charter Amendment No. 1.

Here is a summary to bring you up to date: after much negotiation we agreed to a specific ballot wording for the charter amendment summary. Because of an oversight at the election commission the correct wording was NOT placed on the ballot. However, the error was discovered too late and both the sample ballot sent to every voter and the official ballot on voting machines could not be corrected. The ONLY place the ballot appears correctly is the version posted on the Davidson County Election Commission web site HERE (scroll down to page 4).

The election commission proposed placing a notice on each voting machine so voters could see the corrected version. We agreed to this procedure (since there really wasn't much else that could be done) and asked that poll workers notify voters of the notice on the machine since clearly notices don't do any good unless voters know they are there. The problems that our poll watchers have observed is that voters are not being advised about the presence of the notices.

Dennis Ferrier's report from last week indicates the uncorrected ballot language presents a very real problem and, in fact, is confusing voters.

Vote YES on Metro Charter Amendment No. 1