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7:17 AM Mon, Dec. 17th

Column: We're entitled to pay our own way

It appears Republican lawmakers in Washington, D.C., are poised to take on the so-called entitlement programs of Social Security and Medicare. Hey, the budget needs to be cut so American corporations can continue to not pay their share of taxes and even get refunds on the taxes they don't pay.

I've heard a lot of this anti-entitlement talk around town lately, and when I do, it makes me choke.

It appears to me a lot of folks are actually pro-entitlement. We all want police and fire departments, as well as having our roads maintained. We just prefer if someone else pays for them. I thought I lived in a part of the world where one of its principles was that each pays their own way.

But in all actuality, we would rather have those who live outside the city limits and tourists pay for these things. That can be said because Kingman thrives on its sales tax and by putting its hand out to the state government for funds. We, a community of anti-entitlementalists, would rather have someone else pay our bills in lieu of a property tax.

I do like the sound of that. The next time I'm at the grocery store, I'm going to turn to the person behind me and ask - no, tell - them that they have to pay for my food. These groceries may only benefit my family, but the poor sap who happens to be behind me in line should foot my bill.

We're relying on sales tax dollars to pay for our public safety. As the city budget becomes more and more constrained - it's likely it will have to come up with another $100,000 for the county with an increase in jail rates - we're going to have to realize there is not enough commerce in Kingman to sustain our way of life.

Certainly, the city government needs to work harder at finding places to cut. Mayor John Salem told me he believes the city is "on the ragged edge." He said there aren't any plans for a sales tax increase, but the option has to remain on the table because it's unknown how hard the state is going to hit the city's coffers.

Another form of taxation is beginning to see the light of day. I've had several people tell me they would be in favor of a restaurant tax. There's that having other people pay our bills thing again.

Let's see, I can allow others to pay for my public safety as long as I don't dine out in our fair city. Is that you standing behind me in line? Good, my budget is kind of tight.

Kingman needs a property tax, not because I'm a big fan of taxation. It would provide our public safety services a stable revenue source.

We need a property tax because responsible people pay their own bills. And, besides, we're entitled.