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West Hollywood's Proposed Utility Tax

April 25, 1993

A study session was held in West Hollywood March 30 to give residents the opportunity to express their opinions on the 7.5% utility tax the city council wants to impose on us. In other words, they want us to pay 7.5% tax on our phone, gas, electric, water and even our cable TV bills.

The city right now is $2 million in the red! Councilwoman Abbe Land made this statement: "On our own, we balanced the budget. Then the state comes in, and that's the thing that keeps messing us up."

Hey, Ms. Land, you are so out of touch with reality. It is not the state that pays city management salaries of $85,000. It is not the state, Ms. Land, that pays your aide $45,000 a year. It is not the state that has been supporting The Marketing Corp. with over $4 million, even though the City Council said six years ago that this corporation was supposed to be self-sufficient. (What new business have they brought into the city?) It is not the state that has paid thousands of dollars for parades. It is not the state that cut down beautiful ficus trees on Santa Monica Boulevard and replaced them with ugly shadeless palm trees. It is not the state that has poured thousands of dollars into the Homeless Shelter even though this shelter doesn't take care of West Hollywood residents.

It is time for the West Hollywood City Council to realize it is to blame for the existing budget problems. Ms. Land, if I over-spend on my credit card, I am the one to blame, not the credit card company. You and council members who have been constantly approving all the foolish expenditures are the guilty ones--not the state. Cutbacks discussed at the meeting were a drop in the bucket, and not sufficient to cover the deficit that you and your cohorts incurred. No utility tax!

HANNAH HAUXWELL

West Hollywood

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