Vote for Meltzer
Time to get involved locally. If you live in Denton City Council District 3, you should vote for Paul Meltzer. I've worked with Paul both creatively and professionally and find him to be smart, thoughtful, caring and approachable.
Listening to some recent candidate forums and debates, I realize he's the best person to lead our community into the next few years. He comes prepared and informed, exhibits knowledge on the workings of a town and budget of Denton's size, and offers solutions and ideas for moving forward.
While I love a good Denton story as much as the next Flow Baby, reminiscing about the good ol' days isn't the forward mindset we need for 2017. Paul Meltzer seems to be one of the few candidates who doesn't have a financial interest or personal agenda for seeking a seat on the council.
Raised in a small college town, Paul understands the value of maintaining the character of Denton while preparing us for the challenges that come with rapid growth and expansion.
His home in the heart of historic Denton is testament to the care he'll show in preserving the uniqueness of our neighborhoods while embracing the changes we'll face in coming years.
He has shown the ability to work with diverse groups of people, listen to different views and opinions, work out solutions and put action behind the plans.
If you want a true voice on Denton's City Council, you should cast your vote for Paul Meltzer.
Vote against tax freeze
On May 6, citizens of Denton vote on Proposition 1 to freeze property taxes for homeowners who are disabled or 65 years or older.
My husband and I are senior homeowners who will vote against this tax give-away.
We have several reasons for voting against Proposition 1. For me, the main reason is that a tax freeze would benefit a group who doesn't need or can't justify it because they currently receive substantial advantage from reductions in their annual tax bill.
That is, senior homeowners now get large breaks that other taxpayers don't from the three taxing entities: the city, the county and the school district:
From the city, senior homeowners receive a $50,000 exemption in addition to the $5,000 homestead exemption all homeowners receive. At the 2016 city tax rate of 68.334 cents per $100, that $50,000 exemption decreased a senior's taxes by $341.67.
From the county, senior homeowners receive a $55,000 exemption. There is no homestead exemption from the county for anyone. At the 2016 county tax rate of 24.8409 cents per $100, that $55,000 exemption amounted to $136.62 of tax relief.
Add this (amount) to the $341.67 from the city exemption and that totals a benefit in a reduction of $478.29 from a senior homeowner's 2016 tax bill.
In addition, Denton school district taxes are frozen for senior homeowners.
Clearly Denton senior homeowners already get sizable financial breaks on their property taxes. Enough is enough! Vote against a tax freeze on May 6.
Vote against Proposition 1
I urge voters to consider carefully the long-term consequences of passing Proposition 1, which is on the ballot May 6. A blanket freeze on taxes for all those over 65 passes the tax burden to our children and grandchildren.
My husband and I would benefit from the freeze and our children would pay a high price for our benefits.
City services must be paid for as more baby boomers pass 65.
If the proposition passes and we then decide we can't afford the drastic loss of revenue, we are stuck with it.
We can't simply rescind it. That would require the involvement of the Texas Legislature.
If the proposition had been written to provide tax relief to those who are disabled or if it had a means test for those over 65 with low fixed incomes, it might be a better answer to those who argue for tax relief for those who most need it.
However, a poorly thought-out proposition that will have long-term consequences we can't afford is not the answer.
Vote "No" on Proposition 1.
Stop mass immigration
Having grown up on a cotton and wheat farm in Grayson County, I can identify with Travis Mitchell (Cropped Out series on April 16) regarding urban creep taking over good farmland.
It's sad to see this happening all around Denton.
Good farm and ranch acreage covered over with housing and urban sprawl.
We bemoan the loss of air quality, water adequacy, increased traffic congestion, etc. But for the last 20 years, the U.S. government has allowed 1 million people to legally migrate to the U.S. each year.
Then, each year, a half-million people come to the U.S. on visas and never go home. Untold hundreds of thousands sneak across our borders each year. Most of these legal and illegal aliens are high-birthrate populations.
Overpopulation is the biggest environmental issue facing America.
We no longer have the "wide open spaces" of 100 years ago.
I hope the Trump administration stops this tide that is swamping America, which is fast becoming a Third World dumping ground.
People bring their failed civilizations, cultures, crime and street gangs with them; half are enrolled in some government welfare program. American taxpayers are required to educate their children at an additional cost of billions each year.
But, hey, what's $20 trillion in debt?
It's time to stop this mass immigration -- legal and illegal.