Vote against any sales tax initiative

Letter to the editor

Posted: Thursday, September 28, 2006

Here are some recent front page headlines in the Juneau Empire: "Survey: Juneau's expensive," July 20; "Residents: Costs drive people away," July 27; "Residents brace for higher heating costs," Sept. 12; "Drivers fume even as fuel prices drop," Sept. 24.

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Two years ago, I joined the ranks of those attempting to live here on a fixed income. I am rapidly learning the reality of these headlines.

The high cost of gasoline is made yet higher by the fact that the city charges sales tax on the purchase. The sales tax is computed on the sales price including federal gasoline taxes and the state road tax.

So, we pay sales tax on the federal gasoline tax and the state road tax as well as on the actual cost of the commodity. At $3.07 a gallon, the city sales tax is about 15 cents.

We also pay sales tax on home heating oil - a very significant expense these days - and on basic household utilities, water or sewer service, electricity and mandatory garbage service.

I shall certainly vote against any sales tax initiative that does not exclude motor fuels, home heating oil and basic household utilities. Eventually it may become necessary to vote with my feet.

Allen Morse


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