It is sometimes said that “taxes are taken at the barrel of a gun” While this at first sounds shocking, it rings true in practice. If you fail to pay your taxes, eventually people from the government carrying guns will come to your door and take you to prison. Because of this, the power of a city council to tax is one of the most significant and must be wielded carefully so that encroachments on individual liberty are limited.
There is a fine line between the modest level of taxation is necessary to fund needed services, and the overtaxation Irving citizens have been subjected to in recent years. The City Council has taken a giant leap over that line as it has squandered over $250 million on a lavish entertainment center while raising taxes during the worst recession of our generation. Irving citizens are overtaxed and provide the City of Irving sufficent revenue to provide needed services such as police, fire, sanitation and water/sewage. Tax increases on hard-working individuals during these tough times are indefensible, especially when that revenue is squandered on lavish luxury items. Non-user fees are a tax by another name and also should not be increased.
The City government should be transparent in all of its actions. It should not take an investigation by a major news outlet to cast daylight on one of the largest and most expensive city projects in Irving history. Yet that is exactly what happened. All records relating to city projects and the decision-making process of the city council relating to the awarding of contracts should be open to public scrutiny. The fact that the current City Council instead chooses to deal behind closed doors is an insult to the taxpayers of Irving. We deserve better.
The City government should be limited to (1) providing essential services such as police protection, a fire department, sanitation, and water/sewage; and (2) cultivating a pro-business environment. Government should never attempt to provide a service that the private sector can provide more efficiently or compete with private sector businesses.
As a grassroots activist I have opened communication channels
with local leaders, precinct chairs, election judges, neighborhood associations, and charitable organizations and will continue to do so as your city councilman.