Crawford voters, consider your ballot carefully
By Carl Page
Published Thursday, October 12, 2017 7:51 am
Crawford residents recently received a flyer in the mail for "Notice of Election to Increase Taxes" in Crawford, from Teri Stephenson, Delta County clerk and recorder. It contained summaries filed by persons FOR the issue, and summaries by persons AGAINST the issue. The FOR summary was two paragraphs of the usual "the sky is falling" plea from the Town of Crawford to increase residents' taxes by 200 percent, while the summaries AGAINST were a one sentence statement from unknown person(s) saying how much the increase to Crawford property owners would be. I have no recollection of being asked by either the Town of Crawford or Teri Stephenson for my comments on this issue.
I called Teri Stephenson's office to speak with her and to get more information about how these "comments" were gathered. I was asked by the person who answered the phone why I was calling. I was told this wasn't the clerk's concern and that I needed to talk with elections. When I protested, saying that it wasn't the elections' signature on the flyer, she still declared it was an elections issue and transferred me to their office.
In speaking to the Delta County elections office I find that both "summaries" were submitted by the Town of Crawford clerk. Once again, this suggests biased promotion of a public issue by the Town of Crawford. Last November the Town of Crawford did the same thing, on the same issue, by printing "Support the tax increase" on town water bills and putting it on the town marquee.
This year's ballot includes a carte blanche, that the tax shall be used "for any other lawful purpose" as the Town of Crawford sees fit.
Regardless of the town's claim that a municipal court would have to be self-supporting, "any other lawful purpose" can, and will, fund a court in Crawford. I urge that voters in Crawford read their ballot carefully, cast their vote on facts, and not on "two-sided" comments from the Town of Crawford. The sky is not falling in Crawford. There is over $200,000 in the general fund that can cover roads, town hall maintenance, and any other unexpected expenses until a mayor and town council can be found that shows responsible financial management of taxpayers' money.