A few questions have been raised about our petition drive telling the community leaders that we want 20% cut from the levies for next year. I have attached links to all the previous BLOGs for people to get caught up on our conversation. Some believe this referendum is too radical. Some say it’s okay to cut everything else but don’t touch education. Or cut the administrators’ salaries and pensions but don’t touch the police or firemen. Some believe cutting the healthcare benefits to elected officials will do it. Well, you are all correct and you are all wrong.
Think about your own lives for a minute. Maybe one of you lost your job. Maybe with inflation you are finding the checkbook is empty before all the bills are paid at the end of the month. What do you do? Probably the first thing is to consider getting an additional job or part-time job. When that doesn’t work out you sit down and make a list of where all your money is going. Maybe you cut your grocery bill by eating at home rather than at fast food places. Maybe you decide all those cell phones aren’t absolutely necessary. Maybe you sell one of your cars to eliminate a payment. These things aren’t necessarily permanent. You can always begin dining out again or picking up new cell phones or buy a car down the road when the money comes in. You simply cut your expenses to meet your income for the short term until you can plan a better future. That is all we are asking of our leaders by pushing this ballot referendum. Acknowledge that we have a serious problem and put a plan in place to fix it.
Another part of this petition is simply that the State of Illinois tells us that our referendum can be non-binding only. That means it is our “suggestion” that the leaders reduce levies by 20%. Our leaders can work hard at reducing waste and unneeded expenses to attain the 20% or they can reduce 10% or maybe not even reduce anything. The State of Illinois doesn’t require they even listen to us. Many people would love to see their property taxes frozen where they are even if they can’t be reduced. That is the goal of our petition. Leaders, do exactly what we must do in our daily lives when there is more going out than coming in.
The last comment about the referendum/petition is that if the voters vote it in or vote it out the results won’t be known until after the new leaders are elected. That means these leaders are elected for 2 or 4 year terms and don’t really have to listen to this vote or their constituents until the next election although we believe they will.
So for you naysayers out there who say this isn’t fair or they won’t listen anyway, go on with your life and hope and pray a major unplanned event doesn’t affect your life like it has for so many of your neighbors. This petition/referendum isn’t about forcing our leaders to follow everything we think is necessary, it’s about finding ways to fix the broken system. As we all are finding out, to fix anything we must admit we have a problem, research solutions, and then move forward with the best one. That is all our group expects our leaders to do.