Thursday, December 4, 2008

COAST Helps Dump Trash Tax

Facing protests, Council Flees From Bad Idea "Like Scalded Dogs"

On the same day that COAST rallied to stop the City’s drive to implement a $200 per household per year tax on trash collection, Mayor Mallory announced his formal budget proposal to the Council and eliminated the hated tax.

Once again, by shining the light and applying some heat on the politicians, COAST has succeeded in defeating bad policy,” said COAST Chairman Jason Gloyd. “The voters understand, even if bureaucrats to do, that Cincinnnati, Hamilton County and the State of Ohio are already high-tax areas.

Citing “hundreds” of e-mails and phone calls received by his office on the topic, Mayor Mallory abandoned the City’s mis-guided claim to money of City residents for a service that has been part of general fund expenditures for as long as anyone can remember.


  1. Would COAST support a 'Pay as You Throw' (PYT) system of trash funding? In this system you pay based on your usage (something COAST has advocated for in terms of transportation funding).

    Trash collection and services have to be paid for somehow, so what would COAST suggest for a reasonable funding system? Read more about PYT systems here:

  2. Probably, as long as it's not just a veiled tax increase.

    Historically, trash collection has been part of the portfolio of general city services funded under the general earnings tax. Street lighting & cleaning, police & fire protection are some of the others.

    If the city wanted to charge a la carte for each and every service, and get rid of the earnings tax enirely, we'd be right there cheering them on.

  3. Well a usage charge for each city service would be inefficient and unreasonable. Would we charge people when the fire department arrives at their house, and what if they can't pay? Would we pre-screen and wait until they could prove payment before we served them?

    Some public services can be paid for in this way, but others can not. A reasonable approach to each issue would be the best approach rather than an across the board proclamation.

  4. Interesting you mention that. Go to our award-winning fire museum sometime, and you'll see that's exactly how it was done in the early days. It WAS unworkable.

    The services have to be provided in order for us to remain a city, and they have to be properly funded for us to be an effective city.

    But there's always a case to be made for spending more and more. And if that growth tendancy isn't checked somehow, you get ever increasing claims by government on peoples' earnings.

    The upper limit would be a 100% tax rate, which would literally make us slaves. Thankfully that's a long way off, but right now the average American works about 40% of his year to pay for government. The columnist Walter Williams says that effectively makes him a 40% slave.

    Government is necessary to secure our liberty and must be paid for. But when the people are OVERcharged, it becomes tyranical.

    COAST beleives the rate of inflation is a suitable (although imperfect) yardstick to use for allowing government to grow along with its people while also serving as a check on growth.

    That's a balanced approach. It's sustainable.

  5. ^I'm not sure what any of that has to do with the effectiveness of different funding mechanisms for public services.


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