Opinion: Local government needs to tax and spend no more

Jun 21, 2019 at 01:32 pm by Tess2019

Death and Taxes

Tax and Spend NO MORE!

Rutherford County Commissioners at the public hearing sat there with the taxpayers and listened to Finance Director Lisa Nolen, who explained how each penny of the proposed tax hike would “benefit” us, including the Mayor's pet tax: raises for county employees.

I don't know about anyone else, but I felt so much better about not even getting kissed first.

Taxes are a punishment, originally designed to support the wasteful extravagances of kings. Had nothing to do with paying for fire and police.

This country was not founded on that policy, and yet, some genius decided to use taxes as a political weapon against those whom they believed had too much.

Considering that the average income in Rutherford County and Murfreesboro is only about $40,000, I doubt anyone has too much, except developers and county executives who make almost $100K per year (and more).

When I brought up the excessive costs associated with the County Employee Benefits Trust, that I've been complaining about since 2013, the Mayor responded to Robert Peay that it should go to the State Comptroller.

So, to get this straight, in their minds, they can negotiate the contract, they just can't manage it? And yet, the County Risk Manager (an old campaign buddy of the Mayor's who needed to pay his mortgage) who gets paid nearly $100K per year plus bennies, doesn't know how to do the job?

Did any ONE of the Commissioners pick up the phone and call the Comptroller, in the past 6 years?  Did any one of them do it in the past 5 days after hearing that we're being over-charged by at least 50%?? That's equal to $30M. Multiplied by 6 that's $180M. Enough to pay everyone's property taxes for at least a year. Go ahead, prove me wrong.

We had a Risk Manager for the past 9 years who broke three different laws.

Has she been charged? Last time I checked, forcing someone to give up money for blood was considered something like … extortion? Every penny she took from employees should be accounted for and returned to them. She claimed this policy would help save money. DID IT? Not from what I can see. Why isn't she charged the same way Sheriff Arnold was charged? She is not special, and her crime amounted to much more than his.

The job of the County Commission and the City Council and Mayors is:

  1. Protect our tax dollars and residents with legislation
  2. Function as a board of directors. Property owners are effectively shareholders.
  3. Exercise fiduciary responsibility at all times (which means protecting our money)
  4. Run their offices the same way any executive would and increase the share value.
  5. Make new development pay their own way instead of foisting those costs on existing homeowners.


  1. Making backroom deals with vendors, developers and new employers at the expense of the constituency, i.e., Republic Waste and Cigna and every developer and real estate broker who develops in this County.
  2. Ignoring their phones
  3. Ignoring constituents
  4. Finding jobs for their buddies
  5. Being bad businesspeople – the County and the City are businesses no different from any other corporation.
  6. Using homeowners as low-hanging fruit to pay their bills

I don't know about anyone else in Rutherford, but I don't believe we should accept ONE penny in additional taxation without the Commission and Council CUTTING at least ONE penny in existing taxes.

To the Commissioners: Start acting like you know your jobs instead of listening to the same complaints every year, and then turning around and asking the crooks if they really did steal all that money.

The Commission has no right to compare our tax rates to any other community to justify their behavior. Stop punishing the people who have paid and paid and paid to support this County. Start making developers accountable for the crap they force down our throats (i.e., multi-family housing). It seems like every square inch of Murfreesboro now has an apartment building on it.

We know that the developers are squeezing their millions out of residents who are forced to pay for their new demands. Make them pay and get them off the planning and development boards. Stop victimizing the entire population with this horrific mess you're making of what was once a nice place to live. Developers know they can leave once they complete the mess.

After all, who do you think will be occupying all the multi-family dwellings? Developers won't! They build and then leave. Leave the junk they build in the floodplains for inhabitants to deal with. Ooops!


Support people who know how to do the math and know what their jobs are and if they don't, they know who they can consult with. That's just my opinion.


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