Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for May 16

Washington state has a spending problem

The editorial “Hesitance to rethink taxes will bite lawmakers,” says the state needs to rethink an income tax to restore equilibrium to the state’s budgeting process.

Yet our neighbor states of Oregon and California, which both have an income tax, are facing budget problems as well.

What the state should actually rethink are its spending habits. Save money when times are good, cut unnecessary spending, and stop using this bust-and-boom cycle to justify tax increases.

We’re doing it in the private sector. Government should give it a try.

Lawmakers didn’t see this coming? Give me a break.

MICHAEL REITZ

Lacey

This state needs an income tax

Hurray for The Olympian. Finally the editorial board has come out in support of a state income tax. They need to be a part of the public education process.

Take a look at the states with an income tax.

I am sure that someone has done a comparison of the upside/downside of each state situation.

Our state lawmakers do not have to reinvent the wheel. Cobble together the best of other states’ experiences.

And by The Olympian taking a lead in this, the public would be exposed and educated and some of us would get involved. (The organization of states in D.C. may have some of the information that is germane.)

I appreciate the Republican lawmakers who saved money for their hard-hit school systems. I wonder if they and the Democrats have the courage to examine and support a state income tax system that is enlightened and fair for everyone.

I came recently from Maryland to retire here. When friends came to visit and ask why there are so many panhandlers and homeless, my response was because the jurisdictions have no money, because they have no state income tax.

PHIL VOGEL

Lacey

Thank you to generous crowd at the Procession

This is a letter of thanks to the Olympia community. I was the person wearing the feather suit handing out chalk for Earthbound Productions prior to the Procession of the Species. The donations we received for the Thurston County Food bank were far beyond our expectations.

Last year, which was my first at this endeavor, we collected somewhere under $400. This year, with some experience behind me, we were aiming for $1,000.

Well, after three hours of counting the money, this year’s total was $1,709.75 plus pennies!

It makes me proud to be a part of a community that knows what giving is all about. As I pawed through the cash, sorting things out by collecting non-$1 bills first, I was astounded by the number of $20 bills. And then, when I stumbled upon a $50 bill that some very kind soul had secretly slipped in, it kind of choked me up.

I truly hope the person that did that reads this letter and knows how wonderful they are.

I also want to thank those few people who brought canned goods to donate. However, I understand why this donation technique is not widely practiced for the procession. Carrying a bag with some canned food around downtown Olympia in a crowd, with kids in tow and an armful of parade-viewing gear is pretty much like trying to swim with snow shoes while your hands are tied behind your back.

Next year, a simple dollar bill would do just nicely.

STEVE SHANEWISE

Olympia

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