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Letter: We need a fairer way to pay for schools

Lately I have been experiencing a painful dilemma. It has to do with education funding in New Hampshire.

I recently got my property tax bill, and the school portion of my bill has increased. I am self-employed seven months out of the year; the remainder months I work for my local school district. Every time I walk through those school doors, I see firsthand how hard all the employees work. I have the utmost respect for them; in fact, I wish all parents could spend a day in their child’s school to see how challenging and rewarding every day can be. Running a school is expensive, but all of our children deserve a good quality education.

My dilemma is that my income is not increasing enough to keep up with my rising property taxes. Many folks feel the same way I do. We love our schools, but we need to come up with a new system of funding. As property taxes keep going up every year, it will force local folks like me to make an unbearable decision: to cut funding in order to afford to stay in our homes.

This is just not right. This needs to be addressed. We cannot keep going on this way.

It is time to have a serious discussion about the need for a balanced taxing system, something that politicians running for office have been afraid of discussing. Taxpayers need to be heard on this subject and heard loud and clear.

JOANNA MURPHY

Sutton

Legacy Comments55

The Solution is simple. Salem NH has Rockingham Park that can be the gambling mecca of New England,, We need Casinos , otherwise NH will be a ghost state in 20 years. After they have taken all of our money it will be to late..

the only litmus test for gambling in NH is to decide if the recreation is good for the NH citizens. When one wants to use gambling as a piggy bank to allow the bureaucracy to increase an already bloated govt then they lose the argument

Sail, here's something we agree on. I am strongly opposed to state-sponsored gambling as a source of revenue. I think the social costs far outweigh the benefits.

Teachers collect 12 months' pay and benefits for nine months' work. Can anyone name another firm, organization or occupation -- excluding professional sports -- that has 2-3 months' paid vacation built in?

You have the equation wrong Fearless, most teachers I know do 12 months of work in 9.

probably explains why our students results have not improved since the 1970s and our school costs, adjusted for inflation, have increased by 240 percent,"

Oh and one more thing . . . it's not 9 months. It's 10. And that's not counting continuing education classes, summer school jobs, etc, etc. Get over yourself guys. I saw an interesting story recently that researched the highest paid employees at the college level. Guess who is paid the highest? Not professors . . . FOOTBALL COACHES! That tells you right there where this country's priorities are and why they're so screwed up.

This story is a MUST READ Dan: A tenured professor tells the truth about academia on his way out the door ….Thomas Lifson http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2013/08/a_tenured_professor_tells_the_truth_about_academia_on_his_way_out_the_door.html

And what does that have to do with my post above? Reinforced by the following news story . . . http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/11/07/football-coach-salaries-10-percent-over-last-year-and-top-5-million

How about Congress that works for 3 months with 12 months pay? Do I get a prize for the correct answer?

Well, Obama has taken 46 golfing days and after his Christmans vacations would have taken 36 vacation days. Moreover, the Obama White House starts their weekend at 3PM on Thursdays. That would be 52 additional days of no productivity. Add that up and you come with 124 days of fun and games. I won't even addres the cost and while we are talking about money for education, how far would the $37 million spent on vacations for Obama, his wife and children (who take seperate vacations and cost us all money) go in helping education; Moreover, Obama should be setting the example. If he had any sense of right and wrong, any respect for the people and any ability to lead, he would sacrifice and show the people that he sets the example. However, instead he if living high off of the hog, "movin' on up...to the big time....finally got his piece of the pie". Obama is like Jefferson, George that is.

Reagan always spent Christmas at the White House so the Secret Service could be with Families. Both Reagan and the Bushes also vacationed at their own homes to reduce costs to the taxpayers and reduce staff requirements - Obama - NOT a man of or for the people

No he is out for himself. President Barry Soetoro feels entitled to the American Dream without going through the motions of hard work to get there. Bush also worked during his vacations at his ranch and in his office there. You are correct Reagan did put his staff before his own selfish interests. Not so with Obama.

Comparisons with previous presidential vacations don't show that Obama's are out of line with previous presidents--Bush 2 still leads the pack by far when it comes to vacation time. Your post is a small-minded cheap shot. As this link shows, presidents not born wealthy or made wealthy have to rent their digs. Unlike both Reagan and Bush, Obama doesn't (yet) have a ranch to go to. http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2013/0712/For-Obama-Bush-Reagan-no-vacation-from-politics

No, it is not a cheap shot. You may not know a whole lot about leadership but I do. He is NO leader. He is out for himself and is very selfish. An affirmative action product, he feels entitled. If he was a "man" and a "leader" he would set the example of sacrifice and demonstrate to the nation what he preaches.

Thank you Bruce, funny how they can't stand Obama when he is working but complain when he goes on vacation. You brought up a point I hadn't thought about, that Obama doesn't have a vacation home. I don't think Clinton or Carter did either. Of course if Romney had won, he could have vacationed in at least 12 states and the Cayman Islands.

It is about leadership Tillie. Real leaders, real men, lead by example. They set the tone for their team (constituents). If I told my children that things were bad and we could not afford anything but peanut butter sandwiches and then I fed them and had a thick juicy steak, what kind of a human being would you feel I was? Not a very principled one, correct? Apply that to Obama.

"The nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times.” Obama is still in campaign mode and has ZERO history of any leadership experience

Do you know the sordid illegal history of the home Obama does own?

I wouldn't even expect the word "fair" to be in the Constitution. Democracy is fairness, no need to be redundant. The revolution was fought because of unfairness. The unfairness of the rich over the poor and unfair tax policy on people who had no representation in the English parliament. Life isn't fair but that is no reason to stop striving for it.

Dear Tillie: "There is NOT one mention of the word “Democracy” in our constitution – NOT ONE. The absence of the word democracy is specifically intentional. The exact phrase which sums up our united states charter is: “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government.” The “Consent of the Minority” was not merely a substantive point of constitutional construction. It was -by intentional construct- the very binding substance which created the parchment before a single word was penned. “Minority Consent” was the beginning, the middle and the end of all consideration. Minority consent was the precise and exact litmus test, from which every single decision, thought and consideration about how to frame our form of governance was established." the democrats elimination of the filibuster shows it is not the party protecting the minority.

The question begs how is "Democracy" fairness in the eyes of progressives? I believe it is their belief that simple majority rule is what this country is all about. They have a general lack of knowledge about our country and our Constitution. The Revolution was fought due to unfairness of the rich over the poor? I think progressives have that one wrong as well. The rich and poor fought side by side to overthrow what progressives call "imperialism" aka rule from over the ocean with no representation. Life is not fair and all people are created equal under our system. Progressives love to give preferences and special rights to achieve equity. Equality refers to having right to thrive. Progressive view of fairness is akin to some school kid crying "it's not fair" and the government stepping in to make that fairness happen in a dicatatorial manner.

Itsa, you are correct in your assertion that the American Revolution was not about income equality. The original political structure of the United States was oligarchical in that voting and ofice-holding was limited to wealthy white male property owners. The history of this country has been marked by efforts to expand the franchise to ALL citizens.

Yes, but, that does not mean that we have to somehow make preferences and handouts to everyone, allow illegals to vote, not require voter ID, etc. There has to be some control to the chaos and that is all I ama saying. Income equality is a direct, I repeat a direct result of government policies, including Dodd-Frank and Obamacare that are and will continue to cripple this country, our prosperity and the continued unemployment situation. Both of those programs are akin to cutting off a leg of a patient because the toe is infected.

The Dodd Frank depression coming to your living room in January. Dodd–Frank Mortgage Rules Unleash Predatory Regulators By Diane Katz: Radical new regulation of mortgage financing will take effect on January 10.....new rules will unnecessarily limit mortgage options and access to credit : www.themoralliberal.com/2013/12/18/dodd-frank-mortgage-rules-unleash-predatory-regulators/

There's no mention of the word 'filibuster' in the Constitution. Nor is there any mention of the word 'corporation'. For that matter, the word 'capitalism' doesn't appear either. But we do know that immigrants came to this country seeking a better way of life--they had a better chance of making it here because things were indeed 'fairer'. There was less of a landed aristocracy to get in the way than in Europe, and by dint of hard work and luck there was a better chance than in the old country that a man could improve his station. Not so today. Social mobility in many other advanced democracies exceeds that of the U.S. Social and economic mobility--the 'American Dream', is what most of us equate with fairness. It's been diminishing since the late 1970's--mostly thanks to policies put in place that have made America less fair, less equal, less democratic, and less productive economically to boot. Neither democracy or capitalism is flourishing here as it does in many other advanced democracies.

other things that dont appear in the constitution..abortion, health care,

There is no mention of "social justice" in the Constitution or "health care free for all". We do know that immigrants came to this country seeking a better way of life, they came the legal way, assimilated to our customs and language and worked their tails off (as opposed to the Democrat voting block of future voters) illegal immigrants. "Fairness" is a childish emotional response for those who are underachievers or unmotivated. Opportunity is out there but it is not a supermarket, it is a mining operation. Capitalism? That is the engine that keeps any economy going but honestly, that engine can't run if you keep hammering it.

Re. the gratuitous comment "...worked their tails off (as opposed to the Democrat [sic] voting block of future voters) illegal immigrants." You might want to thank some of those "illegal immigrants" the next time you sit down to eat a meal. Many of those "underachievers or unmotivated" do the back-breaking labor required to harvest our crops or work in our slaughterhouses. As for capitalism--there are many varieties, and some work better than others. Notably, the German and Australian forms among several currently doing better in several key respects that come to mind. As for the current iteration in this country: does it exist for the betterment of some or all the people, or do people exist for it to exploit? Can you even acknowledge it might be an issue? Comparing our form to that of the N.Europeans and Australians--ours is found wanting. And no, they're not "socialist", they're capitalist. Thanks to better corporate governance, and stronger workers' rights, they do a much better job of sharing prosperity--and they're also more productive. You can look it up and compare us to them over the last 3 decades. By most measures, they're cleaning our clocks--and sharing the prosperity--as we once did--before Reaganomics trickled down upon us.

Data to refute the daily populist screed: the data that is conventionally used to calculate the so-called Gini coefficient is the most commonly used measure of income inequality. .."inequality actually declined 1.8% during the 16-year period between 1993 and 2009, when the Gini coefficient dropped from .395 to .388." http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303773704579269990020773098

Just for Bruce: “The Founding Fathers established filibuster as means of protecting minority from the tyranny of the majority.” – Sen. Barack Obama, 2005

You're playing games with semantics here. In popular usage the terms have long been interchangeable. And a citation of your cut-n-paste might have helpful, since it seems to be as much opinion as fact. You also neglected to point out that the word "republican" only appears once--as an adjective (of all things) in Article 4. In practice, even back then, there was considerable confusion and interchangeability regarding the terms 'democracy' and 'republic'. It's especially noteworthy that the Preamble to the Constitution begins with "We the people..."--democratic sentiment if ever there was such. Lincoln's Gettysburg Address refers to a government "of the people, by the people, and for the people." His definition of democracy: "As I would not wish to be a slave, so I would not wish to be a master..." John Marshall called the Constitution a "well-regulated democracy". The party he founded with Jefferson was called the "Democratic-Republican Party. It's nice to see, however, that you and Itsa seem to have developed a greater regard for minority rights in the past few years--I just wonder how you square that with your stance limiting minority voter access whenever the topic comes up.

another in Bruces EXCUSES: true historians will tell the readers that the Federalist Papers are the definitive guide to interpreting the original intent of the Constitution...... not a populists interpretation of the day

The problem Joanne is with teacher unions. When one gets 3 weeks and holidays off, half days that count as a full day and have little accountability when it comes to job performance your end result is higher taxes. Most/many school boards are liberal members that support outrageous salaries for the amount of work performed. With all the state aid that has been flowing into schools over the last decade, can you imagine what your bill would be if not for this $$. Bad news, the schools have spent and surpassed state aid funds. If you compare your taxes today to 10 years ago it is now basically equal. An income tax will just end up with the same result's and when more $$ is needed, you guessed it.... raise the income tax. Until taxpayers and parents are fed up enough with lousy results and constantly changing curriculum that does not provide the promised results this is what we will end up with.

which part of NO dont liberals understand. The voters have spoken for decades and broad based taxes are kaput , done, forbidden. For a liberal to think that replacing one tax with another tax will reduce taxes is a pure fallacy. As usual all democrats want is for somebody else to pay for it.

I have never heard anyone say that replacing one tax with another will reduce taxes. Nobody I know believes that. Replacing one tax (property tax) with another (income tax) WILL lower taxes for those who can least afford them, and will raise taxes for those who can most afford them. And yes, I do know what I'm saying here. Yes, it is "redistribution," and I believe it is necessary in a civilized society. And my final "yes," lest you try to accuse me of hypocrisy, I am prepared to pay more in income taxes in order to achieve a more equitable system. That includes more equity in health care, as well.

Your statement is false FOF. I suggest you look at the states that have an income tax and a sales tax. Look at the tax burdens on the folks who live in those states. NH consistently comes in the top 5 as a state with a very low tax burden. The Dem states have huge tax burdens on the folks who live there. That includes MA, CT, NY, etc.

NH also has the 2nd highest property tax in the US after NJ. Lets give all the facts not just some of them. About.com.

Does not matter that NH has high property taxes, the issue is those states have other taxes like income and sales taxes. The tax burden is much higher in those states. The focus is total tax burden which means folks who live in high tax burden states keep less of their money.

To me, there are two valid foci. One is the total tax burden and the other is how that burden is distributed. For years, the chant in NH has been "NO BROAD-BASED TAXES!" What's left if you don't have broad-based taxes? Narrow-based taxes?

I guess that what I can't understand about progressives is that they call for more and more programs and taxes while the workforce is shrinking and more and more people are losing their homes, strugglingon unemployment and now, paying much more for their healthcare or forced to carry healthcare which they can't afford and never could afford before. Don't you progressives understand that without discretionary income in the pockets of consumers, there is NO economy. Moreover everything from dental care to eyeglasses to heat to gasoline for your car to food have exponentially gotten more and more expensive over the past 5 years. Yet, still, progressives want another slice of everyone's paycheck. When is it enough? You and I may not see it but I see a day in my childrens future when the goverenment takes your paycheck and gives you a stipend and uses the rest of the check to pay (and ration) for your necessities.

there are 3 states that offer the kind of life you desire and all three offer various climates to cover everyone's desire - NY , IL & CA - all three are on the tipping point of bankruptcy & are 100% progressive liberal enclaves

There is a fairer way Joanna - but our state's stupid pledge doesn't permit us to implement it.

can you show me the word FAIR in the constitution? Informed readers know that the word "fairness" that has consumed the progressive liberal democrat lexicon of baloney rhetoric is simply their wealth distribution scheme. Their populism form of governing is pure political hokum and they have strayed far far away from our constitutional republic

As always, yes always your and you selective reading ability. Try reading the preamble to the Constitution, Here you go - "We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America." I submit that fairness would fall under the general welfare. What clearly isn't stated is general welfare of those of means. The one thing I am sure of is your wish for a Fascist regime where only your kind have final word, will NEVER come true. Merry Xmas

Be careful here. Some of the Obamanoids may construe "general welfare" as allowing them a check every month!! (LOL!)

I think we are safe, the word welfare and the system called welfare are very different terms. Sail, truth got your tongue???

as a LIDV I am not astonished that you know nothing about the general welfare clause. Please read the Federalist papers - #41 to learn the welfare clause has ZERO to do with the progressives desire to turn America into a welfare state. In addition, reading the 10th amendment enhances that education

And remember . . . when you put the word "corporate" in front of the word "welfare" it has an entirely different connotation with some folks.

NObamas GM and PBS come to mind

Yes, GM was definitely a form of corporate welfare, as was TARP. But how many jobs would have been lost forever had not the government stepped in?

And don't forget that TARP was signed not by Obama but by Bush.

I give...how many??? and remember you cant use your crystal ball...

Sail, a little communications tip. Everytime you refer to the President by your pet names, you cause people to completely disregard anything you say after that.

only a flaming liberal tells another how to live

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