We are surprised by the recent actions of our Flathead County commissioners to have us vote by default regarding a special tax for 911 communication system upgrades. To vote no we must return the ballot by Dec. 31. Failure to return the ballot is considered an affirmative vote. What kind of democracy is this? Everyone knows about low voter participation and that is when you are voting for someone or for something. What’s up when you are asked to vote against something and failure to do so is considered a yes vote. Every mail order business in the U.S. knows this is not legal to send a product and require payment when it has not been requested.
Our property taxes were just increased by $450 per year, which we consider significant. We think public safety should be a priority for local governments and perhaps our county commissioners should revisit the county budget and reprioritize spending so that the 911 upgrades could be funded without adding an additional tax. Since opportunities were missed for grant applications to cover this expense we feel this upgrade should be put on hold until funding is secured that will not cost taxpayers additional money.
We encourage our county commissioners to never use this voting tactic again. If you have not yet voted no, find your ballot, locate an envelope, attach sufficient postage, and drive your ballot to the post office.
Ron and Judith Ross
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