Sunday, March 14, 2010

Special Deal: Three Columns in one Tidy Package

COLUMN NOTES: When possible, I'm linking to articles that give more information on a topic for anyone who wants it. However, often there are several articles as a story progresses so you can always search the newspaper's website to get other articles.

HARBESON: It’s three, three, three columns in one

JEFFERSONVILLE — For many people, spring is a time to work on huge cleaning jobs. Not me though. I’d rather just throw stuff out —it’s much easier. The point is always to avoid work, which is why I’ve decided to clean out my files and throw three topics I’ve been meaning to write about into one column.

Clark County Airport taxing authority

Keeping with the theme of throwing useless things out, Clark County definitely needs to toss the idea of adding yet another layer of government with the ability to take money by force.

Really now, how many Clark County residents think we need to give another group of people the power to take other people’s money to do what THEY think is important? The only time most of us would think this is a good idea would be after flying at too high an altitude in an unpressurized aircraft.

Besides, we’re already funding various airport operations through federal grants and matching funds. If the airport is a solid business idea, then they should be able to figure out how to fly on their own.

I’m certainly not against flying or the Clark County airport. As a matter of fact, our son earned his private pilot’s license there when he was 17. I remember this well because we completely transferred roles the day he took me for a ride in a tiny two-person plane.

I was like a child, excitedly pointing out features like our house and the mall. He smiled, rolled his eyes and said, “Yeah, that’s really cool mom.”

So, our family has a fond connection with the airport, but that doesn’t mean I think other people should be forced to subsidize it even more than they are now.

The airport board says they want a “constant, consistent, dependable” stream of funds. Well gee, don’t we all? Airport officials need to concentrate on finding creative ways to run the business rather than taking funds from their neighbors.

Let’s not add to the local tax messes we already need to clean up.

Haven House and the homeless

I’ve been reading with renewed interest about the changes that appear to be happening regarding the homeless. It’s very encouraging to see several organizations getting involved now. These are all organizations I’ve heard of before and as far as I know they are professionally managed and operated.

Most encouraging of all is that they actually seem to be cooperating with each other as they work to see what can be done to improve the way this issue is handled. I know this issue is strongly tied to and likely even caused by horrendous government intervention in many areas, but it’s very encouraging to see the local homeless issue finally being spring-cleaned of silly territorial and personal power plays.

Clarksville Town employees living rent-free

Speaking of homelessness and spring cleaning, maybe we can all learn from the Clarksville Town Council. Council members have somehow gotten their government hands on several homes and decided to let town employees live there rent-free. Apparently all they have to do is dust and sweep once in a while.

We’re told the town gives these employees 1099 tax forms for the fair market value so I guess this benefit is counted as taxable income. If their salary is reduced in these instances, then I guess it works as a temporary situation.

However, I don’t understand why the town should be holding onto real estate and playing landlord. It’s time for town officials to start their spring cleaning by actively working to sell the extra property they have found themselves hoarding.

Sellersburg resident Debbie Harbeson loves to throw useless things out but swears it was a mistake that year her husband ended up on the curb.

(Photo Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

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