Letter: A painful economic reality

Posted

Editor of the Reformer,

For a state, any state, to remain viable, it must have income (at a minimum) equal to the expenses. And (at a minimum) some reserves for specific items. Assuming that the expenses of the State of Vermont are not likely to decrease, the income will have to remain constant.

Ask yourself, as the workers flee for job opportunities, how can the income remain constant? Easy, you will just be tapped for more taxes. And, even if you can afford more, many cannot.

Eleven Vermont towns are rated as fiscally distressed; most are the larger population centers. Another 14 are rated as marginal. Those areas will need even greater incomes in order to steady their financial ship. So, look for bigger tax increases there. Often, as in this case, the fix will be painful.

Quality of life includes, or should include, financial soundness. It isn't necessary to be rich, but if your bills are keeping you awake at night or you fear losing your home or car, that is not a good quality of life. Vermont needs new leadership in the legislature that will set a more sustainable path.

Wayne A. White

West Dummerston, Nov. 25

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