General Ideas

Not the time

Why waiting for the right time to raise taxes isn’t good for Raytown

There once was a house with a crack in the basement wall. The homeowner said it is not the time to fix it, and I don’t have time or money.

Time passes….

Homeowner see the crack is more significant, and a little water might get in when it rains for a few days. The homeowner says it’s not that bad, and I don’t have the time or money to fix it. The cost of things is high, and it’s just not in the budget.

Time passes….

The homeowner notices the crack is more significant, and now it leaks even in the slightest rainfall, and maybe there’s a bit of fine sand coming through the gap. The homeowner says it’s not the time to fix that as other expenses are high, and the extra money would require a loan, and paying that back would mean making cuts to some things they liked.

Time passes …

The crack is now large, the house is having issues with the basement flooding, the owner’s investment in the home is decreasing in value, and the repairs now cost more than they would have. Is it time for the homeowner to make the hard choices and tighten the belt to fix the crack and prevent it from getting worse and costing even more?

Raytown roads and stormwater system are like this house. The maintenance has been deferred and taxes not raised, and now many of our roads are in rough condition and need significant repairs to be restored to good condition. It’s never a good time to raise taxes, but sometimes it’s necessary.

Waiting will only make the problem worse and more expensive to repair. Even if your street isn’t on the list, do you want Raytown to be known as the city with bad roads? You put your house up for sale and get limited offers as “oh, that house is in Raytown; they have bad roads.” Even though your street might be good, the overall roads aren’t, and who wants to pay top dollar for a house in a town with bad roads. Bad roads due to deferred maintenance also indicate that the residents aren’t willing to invest in their city and maintain it.

It’s never really a good time to pay more for taxes, but while waiting for the right time, the roads will get worse, the cost of repairs will increase, and it will take more tax money to repair them.