Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Lisbon Maine now has the dubious distinction of having higher taxes than "Auburn" a town three times our size.

The new tax rates adjusted for 100% valuation

Lewiston            24.196 

Lisbon                20.98
Auburn               20.95 
Durham              16.65 
Sabattus             17.80 
Minot                 15.00 
Poland                14.00

We should congratulate ourselves, we now have a higher tax rate than "Auburn Maine" a City three times our size with a reputation for high taxes.

This insanity is nothing less than financial suicide. We can't attract business to Lisbon as it is, how are we going to get business when our tax rate goes even high? 

 We are approaching the point of no return.  The higher the tax rate goes the fewer home buyers and business we attract which means fewer  potential tax payers. This in turn lowers our home values and causes us to increase property taxes in order to balance our budget.    Its a big vicious circle . 

 We can't tax ourselves out of this situation. The one and only solution is to make deep cuts in our budget.  Deep cuts equals reduction in our municipal work force. At the very least we need to institute a hiring freeze in Lisbon. No one should be added to the employment roles without Council approval. 

We will not fix our tax problem by sticking our heads in the sand. We either act now or face an even greater problem next year. Every year we kick the can down the road we make the problem a little worse.

Is this the mess you want to leave to your children?

Joe Hill