Friends, as Huntersville commissioners ponder the upcoming budget vote, it appears to be a foregone conclusion that they will raise property taxes this year. That’s right, during the worst economic times in our lifetime, surrounded by unemployment numbers not seen in our area in over 85 years, three members of the Huntersville town board have decided it’s OK to raise your taxes.

Now they will tell you they have to raise taxes to give all staff a 3 percent pay increase, but just last week our town manager presented us with a proposed budget that would not cause a tax increase and would still give all town employees a 3 percent pay raise. Sadly, that hasn’t even persuaded these commissioners (two of whom describe themselves as fiscal conservative Republicans) to prevent a tax increase. These are the same two fiscal conservatives that last year voted to condemn private property from a longtime Huntersville resident so a for-profit private developer could build an access road into their new development.

Personally, I think a tax increase is not appropriate at this time. We have choices to make and priorities to choose, but make no mistake: we can have a fully funded budget, without cutting services and without a tax increase.

– Charles Jeter
Huntersville commissioner