Letter: Take it easy on town employees in Pembroke

Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Take it easy on town employees in Pembroke

Residents of Pembroke have probably received their property tax bill for the second half of 2017. They have every right to be upset with the unanticipated tax hike, which affords them essentially no time to make up any shortage in the money they intended to use for payment of that bill.

As a member of Pembroke’s budget committee, I trusted that the information provided by the town, county and school district had been carefully checked and was correct. While the budget committee is being careful not to jump to conclusions, as evidence mounts it appears that school district revenue, which was a critical part of the tax rate setting equation, was inaccurate.

To be fair, there are many factors that go into the tax rate, and there were other variances too, but they were more in line with expectations. What concerns me as a citizen of Pembroke is that blame and anger associated with the tax bills may be vented on employees at town hall when residents go to pay their taxes and feel the need to complain.

To be clear, the town and its employees had little to do with the problem. That fault appears to rest primarily with unrealistic school district revenue estimates.

My reason for writing is to ask that Pembroke residents go easy on town employees, whose job it is to mail and collect the bills. They didn’t cause this problem.



(The writer is vice chairman of the Pembroke Budget Committee.)