Van Buren County residents are frustrated about another property tax increase.
Last year, commissioners approved a 35-cent increase. Now, county commissioners will vote for a 45-cent increase to try and balance the budget. Long-time Van Buren resident and business owner Laura Wallace said she is against the raise.
“We are still broke,” Wallace said. “They are looking for more money. The people that are handling our money I do not trust them with our money. Until they show me they can handle budget, I am not interested in giving them anymore of my hard earned money.”
Wallace became an unofficial leader in citizens voting down a proposed wheel tax in 2019. This year, Van Buren wants to add another wheel tax to the ballot. Wallace said officials need to listen to their community while trying to fix the county’s financial problems.
“They are bringing it up again,” Wallace said. “They are wanting to charge us $40 a vehicle. They want to put it on the ballot in November. I do not think people will be happy. They are trying to raise our property tax again, because they can not form a good budget. We are not happy, and we will like to see it fixed.”
Wallace said a lack of communication is a major issue in the community.
“The community wants to help, but they do not allow the community in very well,” Wallace said. “People have problems getting a hold of their commissioners and the chairman. We do not even know what is coming up on the agendas for meetings. They need to give us a chance to help them.”
County Commissioners will vote on the final budget August 10 including the proposed property tax.