Home | Editorials | We dont need a rail system in Ellis County

We dont need a rail system in Ellis County

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I was fortunate enough to attend a little meeting put on by Michael Morris as spokesperson for the Texas Local Option Transportation Funding Act for local and county officials.

Supposedly the purpose of this meeting was to provide a forum for Mr. Moore to educate our elected officials on the new $129.5 billion dollar bill (estimated to be $160 billion later) for regional rail service and how wonderful it would be for Ellis County. Let me just go ahead and start this fight right now.

I don’t take too kindly to carpetbaggers coming into our county to begin with, but I really have a problem when they come in with the intent to force an additional tax on local residents for the benefit of DART.

I surely don’t care for being told over and over again how we as citizens of this county have not paid our fair share of taxes for roads, bridges, and infrastructure.

According to Mr. Morris we have not paid our fair share for transportation.

He stated that the State Legislature has denied an increase in sales tax during the past two sessions, and he just can’t understand why.

Let me tell you why, Mr. Morris.

It is called a representative form of government in which the legislators attempt to do the will of the people.

Right now the people don’t want any additional taxes. It’s really fairly simple, try to wrap your mind around it.

We were told how that we would be passing on this irresponsible behavior of ours by not paying our share of transportation costs.

He explained how we would be passing this horrible responsibility on to our children and grandchildren. Sound familiar?

Oh…we can choose to participate in this wild taxation boondoggle or leave our descendants to suffer the consequences.

I want to make sure everyone understands what it going on here.

There is a bill currently pending before congress to raise money for Dallas-Fort Worth regional transportation projects such as new roadways, passenger rail service, and bridges.

All of this to be funded by taxes and fees assessed against you and I as Ellis County citizens. What? Oh yeah, it gets better.

We were told how this would be a partnership between the private and public sector in which we as good citizens could control whether we wanted to participate...or suffer the shame of our irresponsible refusal to act by supporting the bill.

What does this mean you may ask?

Let me tell you. This means that they want to put a rail system, or transportation system of toll roads etc. into Ellis County, but they want to do it you re your money.

The system cans support itself as a private enterprise so they must tax.

What about the government paying for our roads, bridges and transportation issues you may ask?

Well, the government is paying for it, just not the way these guys want it done.

They don’t like the fact that our congressmen have failed to raise the sales tax for the past two sessions, so you know how to fix that?

You make an end run around the legislature and try to pass a bill by getting the counties to fund your little project.

The funding would come from the following taxes and fees, which are not inclusive by the way…$250 new resident fee for anyone who moves into the county; a mobility improvement fee imposed upon your vehicle registration each year up to $150 per vehicle; a driver fee imposed on your drivers license issuance and renewal each six years; a local options gasoline tax of .05 per gallon of gasoline; and last but not least some vague and mysterious parking fee and emissions fee.

Now Mr. Morris tells me he is trying to get between $129.5 and $160 BILLION dollars so we can have better roads and a rail system.

For some reason people are throwing around figures in the billions of dollars and acting like its no big deal.

Oh my God! I am losing it again.

But wait, there is more.

We are told all of this will come with no new levels of government.

There will be no new levels of government, did you get that?

We are going to try and raise BILLIONS OF DOLLARS to put into the hands of DART, The-T, and DCTA, but there will be no increase in the size of government, you know why?

They don’t want this project to be subject to government oversight.

They don’t want to be accountable to the voters. If we privatize this project they can take our BILLIONS OF DOLLARS and spend them as they see fit.

Bottom line here is simple. Dallas County has tried for years to leverage itself into Ellis County by hook or crook. Dallas County has nothing to offer Ellis County except a higher crime rate, higher taxes and the possibility of watering down our conservative voting base.

I have no interest in paying an additional $1,000 per year in taxes not to ride the bus. I live in Ellis County for a reason.

I also do not live in Dallas County for a reason. If I want to ride the bus or the rail I would move to where they have bus and rail lines, and whatever you do don’t come down here an try to make me feel bad about it, because I don’t.

I cannot stress enough the seriousness of this situation. Several elected city officials were openly in support of a huge tax and spend measure being passed in Ellis County.

Apparently they aren’t concerned that we are in a recession and just inherited a new deficit that may well destroy our countrys monitary system.

I just don’t understand whats going on here.

I hope and trust that enough of you will contact your congressman and demand they vote against this oppressive taxation.

I also hope that you will all remember which of your local or county representatives were in support of this needless project when election time rolls around again.

Hopefully our Commissioners will see the writing on the wall and refuse to call the issue for a vote.

We don’t need a rail system in Ellis County and we certainly don’t need any new taxes.

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