John C. Stevens
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
Have you ever noticed that too many times the St. Johns County Commissioners forget the voters who sent them to office?
After they are elected they rollover and become the loyal mouthpiece for the permanent bureaucracy like Commissioner Cyndi Stevenson or some special interest that greased their campaign like Commissioner Rachel Bennett or sometimes both like Commissioner Ron Sanchez and Commissioner Jay Morris.
They all behave as if government deserves an endlessly larger share of other people’s money to build their empire of waste and lifetime pensions.
Some might remember not too long ago, people generally opposed the expansion of government power not because they read policy studies or earned degrees in economics, but because they placed a high emphasis on integrity. Using government to obtain something at somebody else’s expense, or mortgaging the future for near-term gains, seemed dishonest and dishonorable to them, if not downright sinful and immoral.
It is foolish for these SJC Commissioners to blame others for the consequences of their own making and poor judgment. Their instant and irresponsible response is always to throw up their hands and say we have to increase taxes rather than making hard decisions to live within our means.
At this point, I think you would be hard pressed to find many people who agree that St. Johns County is operated as lean as possible. St. Johns County has an excess of waste in the budget, is losing almost $1million in services that compete with private business and has a litany of departmental operational inefficiencies.
When these Commissioners have cut all they can and have rid us of all the SJC boondoggles and have forced all the SJC departments to operate as efficient as possible, then and only then, should they ask for any tax increase and even then, it should be a hard sell.
Put it on the ballot, we’ll show you how necessary your tax increase is to the people.