Among numerous other dramatic and heretofore unpublicized changes, the Senate unveiled another version of its plan to shift sales tax revenues away from urban counties toward poorer rural counties this morning. And while parties can legitimately debate the wisdom of various sales tax apportionment methods, the underlying premise of the legislation — that adequate tax revenues are essential for communities to fund education and other public structures that are central to economic health and development — runs directly counter to everything else the conservative legislative majority preaches.
On virtually every other day, government is the enemy and the beast that needs to be starved. Somehow, however, when it comes to sales tax revenue, all of a sudden government is essential for community health.If you doubt this, listen to Senator Harry Brown preach about the inability of counties like his (Onslow) to offer teacher salary supplements and build new schools.
Earth to Senator Brown: There are lots of ways to get after the problem of inadequately funded public structures and services…like, for instance, not wrecking the state income tax.
The bottom line: It would be nice if these guys would get their story straight. While their rhetoric this morning on the importance of public investments is welcome, the hypocrisy it evidences with respect to just about everything else they do and say is stunning.