A friend and I have exchanged emails lately about my town’s requirement that I directly pay for repairs to my sidewalk and curbing in the public right-of-way — a looming prospect here. While not solely peculiar to Pennsylvania, I don’t think most towns impose this upon property owners. After all, we do pay real estate taxes, and here in our town, we pay ridiculous amounts of them. In fact, a similar town in Massachusetts typically levies a rate of one-third what we pay. Surrounding towns are no better. We pay higher taxes than my friends in Massachusetts and yet theirs include such services as trash pickup, sidewalk maintenance as well as the schools, police, and fire department.
My friend went off on a tangent, expressing his frustrations with government taxation in general. As a Canadian, he understands better than most about the imposition of extreme tax rates, which in Canada mostly pay for a shrinking amount of their much-ballyhooed health care coverage. As he explains most eloquently: Continue reading Curbing Government