Press "Enter" to skip to content

Reader fears cut in city services

To the editor,

It is difficult these days to hold a position on the board of commissioners for the town of Mount Airy. While developing a budget for the new fiscal year, the board is in the unenviable position of having to choose between two fates: to be held responsible for the decay of city services and the associated quality of life, or to be held responsible for an increase in taxes.

The latter of these choices is distasteful to politicians because an increase in taxes is immediately apparent to voters. Any attempt to increase city revenues would require a campaign to convince citizens of its value, but this is what leadership is about.

The safe path is to leave the taxes alone, and make spending cuts that the public may not see. For example, deferring needed maintenance to city-owned buildings, leaving personnel vacancies unfilled, or putting off the purchase of up-dated equipment. This results in reduced services which, in turn, results in a reduced quality of life, a process which is slower and officials hope the public will not notice.

The budget as proposed will have a negative impact on recreation, arts, the library, beautification and the many things this community has supported over the years making this city great; a path that will make our town less attractive to citizens, tourists and prospective businesses.

Unfortunately, this is the path the city commissioners have chosen. The proposed budget provides no new revenues and has made major cuts to organizations that enhance the quality of life in Mount Airy. The cuts to the library, for example will result in lay offs and the end to evening and Saturday hours. Deep cuts are proposed to the Surry Arts Council as well; an organization that has done so much to promote Mount Airy tourism.

A public hearing is scheduled to be held on Thursday, May 18, at 6 p.m. at City Hall to discuss the budget. I would encourage everyone to come and ask for continued support for a good quality of life in the City of Mount Airy.

David R. Crawford

Mount Airy



Be First to Comment

    Leave a Reply