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Newcastle must live with limits

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I attended the Newcastle Town Hall meeting on Oct. 9 to hear the pros and cons about Measure B and Measure K funding for the Newcastle Fire District. I listened to three incumbents up for reelection and three new candidates for the Newcastle Fire Board. As I watched the proceedings one thing appeared obvious to me. The fire board and proponents of Measure B seem to be willing to financially harm thousands of taxpayers, some pretty severely, for the benefit of a handful of employees and an undefined future fire station. The fire district presently has in place a yearly parcel tax called Measure F that was passed by the voters in 1997. The minimum revenue this tax presently provides the fire district is approximately $75 per parcel in the district. In addition, this tax is allowed to increase by 2 percent each year. I’m sure that other tax revenues are available to the district that were not disclosed. With proper financial management this should be adequate to run this small department. I think passing Measure K is probably overly generous in the amount of its increased taxes for three years, however, after three years this tax will drop to $30 per parcel which, of course, is added to the existing Measure F tax. I feel the new candidates for the fire board understand the runaway tax situation Measure B represents and will make an effort to live within the means Measure F plus Measure K provides. JACK BOAN, Auburn