Olympia must increase its tax base
Wake up, Olympia! We are falling behind. The growth in our tax base has been sluggish for the past 10 years, not just in the current recession.
Olympia’s retail sales tax growth since 1998 has grown 46.6 percent, as compared with Lacey’s 164 percent and Tumwater’s 70.5 percent. Rainier and Yelm are even kicking the pants off of Olympia with a sales tax revenue growth of 184.9 percent and 164.8 percent respectively.
People are spending their tax dollars elsewhere — building, buying and investing in other communities.
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Why is this bad news? With tax revenues, Olympia can invest in ourselves — create jobs, support great neighborhoods and the environment, and improve our police, fire and parks.
Olympia’s property and sales tax base also supports our schools, library, transit and human services.
How do we increase the tax base without shifting the burden to current residents?
We need to strengthen our economic activity. Our current City Council is investing in the Hands On Children’s Museum, the fourth fire station, City Hall, sidewalks and road projects. They are on the right path, so let’s help them succeed.
Like the saying goes, “Get involved! The world is run by people who show up!” The people showing up are the naysayers. They can’t see the forest for the isthmus. I am voting for local leaders who can embrace the positive energy of community activists, reach out to those who are not showing up and engage the community in a positive conversation about our future.
FAITH TRIMBLE, Olympia