Letter to the Editor

Plan would rob programs

Saturday, October 23, 2004

To the editor:

Just say no. That's right. Vote against Amendment 3. It robs our state of money that has historically gone to schools, colleges, prisons, health care, mental-health services and highways. Sales taxes on vehicles never belonged to highways before 1979. They received over half then and are now back for the rest.

Amendment 3 authorizes unlimited bond sales. That's right. No limit. Sale of bonds is the most expensive way to fund construction. It costs two to two and one-half times the amount to retire them.

No tax increase? Don't believe proponents. We've lost over $1 billion the past four years due to the sluggish economy. Now we're being asked to rob general revenue again to the tune of $500 million over the next four years. That means $500 million less for schools, college, prisons, children and mental-health services, which already are underfunded.

Worst of all, there's still no accountability and no oversight of the Missouri Department of Transportation. We need better roads, but not at this expense. Vote no on Amendment 3.

JERRY FORD, Missourians for Tax Justice, Cape Girardeau