Your recent editorial regarding the upcoming bond referendum and the council's inaction regarding the water situation in Payson "hit the nail on the head." It just did not hit it hard enough. The total cost to the taxpayers of Payson, including the emergency bond issue for the hangars and the equipment shed, will be in excess of $10 million.
A disproportionate share of this will be paid for by sales tax which is the cruelest and most regressive tax conceived of by any bureaucracy. The idea that tourism will pay for the proposed improvements just does not hold water. Just look at your water bill, electric bill, gas bill, along with what makes up the total of your grocery bill and all of the other purchases that you make here in Payson, and you will see clearly who will be paying for the proposed upgrades and remodeling. People on fixed incomes and young families just getting along are the ones who will suffer the most. The worst aspect of these proposed new property and sales taxes is that none of these dollars will be going to water exploration or the development of existing water resources.
Home ownership, assuming the property is well-located and well-maintained, should hold its value and probably increase in value over time. This is a principle that most of us have held to be true and have pursued all of our working lives.
The most recently elected members of our town council, for the most part, held as one of their highest priorities the development of water resources. Instead, they bring to us a series of bond issues that do not address the most pressing issue that the town is currently facing -- finding and developing an on-going adequate water supply. If something is not done to ensure an adequate water supply into the future, the resale value of all of our homes will go down drastically. This must be a concern to all of us who have invested in a home that represents the single largest investment that we hold.
I urge you to join me in telling the council that there are all kinds of things that would be nice to do or to have, but there is no priority higher than insuring an adequate water resource. We should pay for the cost of the development of that resource and consider other wants and needs when the most important task is completed.
Ronald Haar, Payson