There’s a revolt coming in this nation. Government — from local city councils all the way to the federal level — are out of control. People are tired of being taxed to pay high salaries and generous benefits of government officials, many of whom are not just overpaid, but also under-worked.
Government efficiency is an oxymoron.
The latest outrage of government abuse is in a series of articles this week in the AJC. The newspaper did an in-depth survey of metro Atlanta counties property assessments and found that in many cases, county assessors didn’t cut property assessments nearly as much as the housing bust would dictate.
The reason? They’re worried about keeping the money flowing to local governments.
That’s an outrage. Assessors had no problem raising assessments during the boom years, but now they’re artificially keeping assessment high during the recession and housing crash.
Case in point is Clayton County. Median values fell there 43 percent; local tax assessments only went down five percent.
All of this is being driven by money. Until 2008, government officials had never had to make real cuts in spending. Historically, governments always got more money each year.
That changed with the Great Recession, but government officials were slow to adjust. They couldn’t fathom that they had to do with less revenue.
Barrow County, of course, did make deep cuts in 2009. And as far as we know, local assessors did more-or-less follow the market in lowering assessments.
Still, the kind of situations uncovered by the AJC aren’t rare. A lot of government officials have been working to protect their money sources, even if it means being unfair to taxpayers.
But we wonder: Who’s going to pay to keep all this big government going?