April 07, 2020

Understanding TABOR

There have been much discussion and advertisements on the good and bad points of the citizen’s initiative that is on Maine ballot as a referendum question on Nov. 7.

I have reviewed as much information as possible that I have been able to assimilate, so I as a citizen, could understand the objective and purpose of this citizen-generated bill. I am not advocating support or nonsupport of this bill, but I would like to help the common person to understand this bill.

The Taxpayer Bill of Rights allows government to grow at reasonable rates of increase such as overall inflation rate and population growth. Its purpose is to put controls and limitations on spending. It does not force cuts. Governments at each level will continue to exercise the administration and control of allocated spending within limitations under the watchful eyes of its tax payer-citizens.

It moves a certain control of monies away from those requesting and receiving monies to those paying the tax dollars. It requires government at all levels to spend taxpayer monies more wisely with limitations and if spending exceeds the limits, government must justify those increases and obtain voter approvals.

It will continue to be government’s responsibility at all levels to spend the taxpayers’ monies wisely and within limitations, probably causing governments to prioritize more closely essential items where monies need to be spent.

Charles J. Birkel


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