November 1, 2012 | Vol. 39, No. 34

Letters to the Editor

Promotional Facts

To the Editor:

I enjoyed the quote from Mr. Giesbrecht in the October 25, 2012 Pilot “We need to make sure that all of our promotional information is based on fact”. So now we have fact to support a crumbled foundation. The foundation that I refer to is the Charter and Petition. The Petition makes promises which are not carried into the Charter. Once the vote is taken the Petition is meaningless. Charter provisions important to those living outside Petersburg were removed or changed. Public meetings were held early on to sell borough formation but no changes were made to either the Petition or Charter even though critical comments were made by the attendees. The process was too far along.

Here is an example of one of the Petition promises that cannot and will not stand. In the Petition the city leadership proposes to charge a 4 mil property tax on all real property outside of the current city boundaries. That promise is not carried forward into the Charter which will be the controlling document. As Mr. Hoag stated in his October 18th Letter to the Editor, Petersburg Pilot, “It [Borough Assembly] will have the authority to set that tax rate as it sees fit, with input from the residents during the public budget process.” So if you own property outside of Petersburg will your taxes be 4 mils or 10.99 mils. I believe the past history of Council actions clearly demonstrates it will be 10.99 mils as well as a personal property tax. Think about it. Check me out. Go read the Charter and Petition and I’m sure you will come to the same conclusion.

Bob Lynn

Do what is reasonable and fair

To the Editor:

Dear friends and neighbors opposed to borough formation.

I am writing to ask you to do what is reasonable and fair to all of us who enjoy this wonderful community. 

Let me list a few benefits to you that Petersburg residents now support. 

You have the use of our schools, day care center, medical clinic, hospital, mental health clinic, long term care and the manor with independent and assisted living. Our radio station is a valuable link for all of us.

Many of you have or had jobs in the community. 

You have the use of our harbors (with garbage disposal), roads, street lights, snow removal and sidewalks to get you where you want or need to be. 

You have the use of our parks, trails, bike paths, ball fields, gymnasiums, pool facility, museum, library, auditorium and movie theater. You have always been welcome to partake in all our festivals and community events. 

To varying degrees you have the protection of our police, EMTs and fire department.

And, least we forget, you may end up where some folks say the best view in town is, our beautiful cemetery.  

Our 2012 tax rate was near 11 mill. I am not complaining about this tax. Of course I do not like it, none of us do. However, I want all the services Petersburg has to offer. With your rate at 4 mill you must also take into consideration that not only will your tax be lower than ours but your property value will also be lower because some of you will not have all the services that we enjoy. It will be your choice to raise your milage rate in the future if you want more services.  

We will also have to pay tax on property we own outside the Petersburg city limits. 

So be it. 

I have heard the comment “we pay city sales tax”.  The city sales tax does not begin to cover all the services I have listed and is no comparison to the amount of property tax residents now pay for the services you and I enjoy.

The borough formation will benefit all of us. The bottom line is, do you want to be part of our borough or someone else’s?

I ask you to come on board with us and do what is right.  It’s time. 

Jean Pederson Curry

Born and raised 

Petersburg

Both sides should be represented

To the Editor:

It was interesting and disappointing to see the large ad in the Oct. 25 Pilot, paid for by the City of Petersburg (tax dollars), advocating a “yes” vote for the formation of the borough. This ad implies that all citizens in Petersburg are in favor of borough formation. Does the City of Petersburg also represent their many citizens that pay taxes and will vote “no” to borough formation? To be fair with everyone there should be an ad the same size spelling out the negatives and a “no” vote for borough formation paid for by the City of Petersburg. Therefore, both sides would be represented equally with tax dollars.

Sharon Sprague

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