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Raises out of whack
Maricopa County residents, take an honest look at your home tax rates. My assessed home value, since 2004, increased at a rate of almost 20 percent a year — a full 100 percent increase in four years. Full cash value, in 2004, was $180,000. The same home is appraised at $365,500 in 2008, without any home improvement.
Now for the icing on the cake: The county appraiser lowers the full cash value by 10 percent between 2008 and 2009 while, at the same time, my limited cash value increases by a full 10 percent. Our primary taxes are based on the limited cash home value. So, instead of getting a reduced tax rate since my home value decreased, my taxes again increased by 20 percent.
I am a retired individual on a fixed income and I can’t remember when I received a 20 percent raise for a year of work. Why does the government deserve a 20 percent raise five years in a row?
When are we going to get together and stand up to local government and the Arizona Legislature, who are all out of control?
ROBERT J. COLES
Watch out, Paradise Valley
We lived south of Indian Bend Road in Scottsdale from 1966 to 1978, and are aware of an extremely large number of people living in this area who have developed and/or died of various cancers. There is a high probability that water contaminates coming from industrial wastes caused an above-average increase of cancer in this area.
It has been acknowledged that TCE-tainted ground water is associated with the Motorola Corp. Hopefully, the people who are now living in the newly defined area with the tainted wells will prepare themselves for future cancer outbreaks. In all probability they or a family member will get some form of cancer in the not-too-distant future.
As usual the government organizations, including the Arizona Corporate Commission, state environment regulators and the federal environmental agencies, did zero for the people then and now. Once again, Scottsdale’s City Council will “discuss” the issue and “discuss” the issue and “discuss” the issue with the usual results: Nada!
McCain’s response scary
With President Fidel Castro’s resignation it is interesting to see the presidential candidates’ reaction to such a very recent event. Both Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama assumed politically expedient positions involving preconditions for dialogue with Cuba, while Sen. John McCain expressed his hope that Castro will die soon. Should this be candidate McCain’s approach to problem solving I wonder who else is on his wish list?
My opinion is that this was the most unpresidential response to an international event that anyone could possibly have made and does not bode well for the U.S. should McCain be elected. Likewise, I would have hoped that at least one of the Democratic candidates could have learned from our history with Cuba and simply suggested a dialogue could possibly be initiated in the near future.
They make sense here
In June 2006, I planned to build a security garage/storage area for my family’s personal property, papers and keepsakes. Unprecedented invasions of our borders and robberies of our residences combined with disastrous weather conditions create an emergency need for these strong boxes that offer protection to the common property owner in Arizona.
Investors and developers are only concerned about the future aesthetics and beauty of their investments when the dust finally clears from the construction. However, the rest of us have to worry about protecting our family and property in the middle of a construction boom and freak weather events, that are compounded by local political corruption and an uncontrollable wave of crime.
These containers are shaped like a typical rectangular style southwestern building. They blend in and even disappear into the existing architecture and landscape easily. They are water, wind, fire and theft resistant. They meet and surpass all the structural and safety requirements of Pinal County’s building codes. These economical cargo containers make the flammable, pressboard construction done by under-the-table laborers for 15 times the price seems ridiculous.
I Acquired a steel cargo container to store irreplaceable possessions, legal documents and other evidence. Though Planning and Zoning officials knew we were in litigation over easements, setbacks, and the permits they had issued, they started harassing me to move the storage container they forced me to acquire. They issued citations and started altering them to fit the circumstances as the developers continued to phone in complaints.
Unprecedented corruption and dysfunction in our local government leaves us without leadership and protection.
How many computers needed?
I spoke with my stepson who works for the street department in another major city. I asked him what he felt about $6,000 for a field computer. He said that depending on the programs it has loaded and accounting for the ruggedness needed for the field, $6,000 price tag could be in the ball park.
Whether a city the size of Mesa with a pretty basic north-south, east-west road grid needs 25 of them is questionable. I haven’t heard or read anything more on the City Council vote, but I could go along with a “yes” vote for that price, but for fewer computers.