Letters for February 23, 2013
Say no to new tax to support Panthers
Our NFL team, the Carolina Panthers, is asking the citizens of Charlotte for $144 million and the state of N.C. for $62.5 million to renovate the Panther football stadium located here in Charlotte.
In order for this to happen, our state legislature is being asked to approve a 1 percent prepared food and beverage tax for the bedraggled taxpayers of Charlotte and a $62.5 million grant from our State treasury. Charlotte citizens are already the highest taxed in the State and like many of the other 99 counties, has high employment, infrastructure needs and the likely prospect of higher property taxes and fees.
The Panthers, on the other hand, is a wealthy, private NFL franchise owned by wealthy people, who are quite able to fund their own stadium renovations. At this very time, our State legislature, in order to address a budget crisis, is cutting services and funding to every city and county in N.C.
The State budget crisis is real and I believe our legislators are doing the best they can to balance the budget with the least amount of negative impact on the State’s citizens. However, despite their best efforts, cuts are being made that will affect every town, county and citizen in our State. Many of us believe that giving business incentives, tax money, to private businesses is not a proper role of government. Even if you disagree, surely our economic crisis, our unemployment, our unfunded government liabilities and sorely needed infrastructure improvements, would dictate that we spent our available funds on the needs of our citizens and that certainly would not include more money for entertainment.
I am asking the citizens of every town and county in our State to ask their legislators to refuse State funding for this NFL stadium renovation, and further, if you will, ask your legislators to refuse permission to the Charlotte City Council to raise the Charlotte’s taxes to fund the renovation. Our State legislature has the responsibility to prevent cities and counties from overtaxing their citizens. The legislature is our last resort! Surely, in the name of justice and commonsense, our State legislature will not allow the city of Charlotte and the state of N.C. to give over $200 million to a very successful sports franchise that can well afford to pay its own way.
Please contact your state representatives as soon as possible.
Member Charlotte City Council 1991-1999
I apologize to Sheriff, deputies for my town
As a Union County resident for over 20 years who was annexed by the Town of Indian Trail a number of years ago, I have always been covered by the Union County Sheriff’s Office. So, as the Indian Trail Town Council began discussions about renewing the Sheriff’s contract, I became very concerned with what I was hearing. Several council members appeared not to understand what a service contract is. Then, at a Special Council meeting this past Saturday, Feb. 16, things became ugly. I want to offer Sheriff Cathey, Lieutenant Coble, and the deputies who serve our town an apology for the Mayor’s and a few Council Member’s behavior in the matter. It saddens me.
Also, I would like to personally thank each member of the Union County Sheriff’s Office for their excellent service to the Indian Trail residents. In addition, I strongly encourage each resident of Indian Trail to take the time to thank the deputies who serve us.