This imposition of "public safety impact fees" is a bad idea.
First, let us call "user fees" what they are - taxes. The government extracts the money from you and spends that money on what it wants.
The "impact fees" (taxes) already in place for the physical expansion of infrastructure (water, sewer, roads ) already add a great deal to the cost of building, and thusly living, in Columbia County.
The addition of these "fees" (taxes) are simply tax-shifting to pay for needed upgrades in public safety in Columbia County. By saddling future development with these costs, the current commissioners are relieved of taking unpopular positions on the tax rate.
One of the problems is that with a steady or accelerating growth rate, the county will come to depend on this income since it can be used basically for any purpose. When the growth rate stalls, the county will be left in a lurch and we already know where the county would seek the money to make up the difference - our wallets.
While taxes are a necessary evil that should be borne equitably by the governed, it seems that Columbia County has been so Republican for so long, those doing governing only remember the "necessary," and have forgotten the "evil," much less the equitable.
I'll not be voting for the Gimmie-crats, but I pray our Republican leadership re-discovers the concepts that define our party.
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