This is in response to Ms. Brames’ comments about yet another property tax increase in Esquimalt.
She claims it has to be done in order to maintain the levels of service we have come to enjoy. Here’s how that typically political statement stands up. I bought my current home in Esquimalt in 1985. We had our own police force, garbage pickup every week – from the backyard – and an annual debris cleanup (desks, chairs, sofas, etc.); all the items residents now enjoy decorating your boulevards with.
Care to guess what my net taxes were then? $775. Now we have to rent our police from Victoria, garbage pickup is every two weeks and the annual cleanup is gone, “in an effort to save money.”
My net taxes in 2011 were $3,200, an increase of 412 per cent over 1985. While it is true that the value of my home has risen by four times, that asset is only realized if I sold it and lived in a van down by the river.
And while politicians everywhere give themselves outlandish pay hikes, they then tell us to bite the bullet and pay more. I am sick of bureaucrats telling half truths. I realize they collect on behalf of other agencies – transit, Capital Regional District, hospitals, etc. But my taxes have increased an average of 15.8 per cent per year.
How can any politician say this level of taxation is sustainable? I guess if council raises taxes too much, they can always give themselves another raise. I read lately that Esquimalt was the only area in Greater Victoria to have negative growth. Any wonder why?
So I ask you Ms. Brame, where is the value in yet another tax increase when we are paying too much now? We are literally being taxed out of the homes we grew up in and raised our families in.