Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
Wed, Sept. 18

Friday Catchall: Pay me now, or pay me (more) later

The Friday Catchall:

• MORE TAXES? We have at least two segments of our population that are vulnerable: children and seniors. Let’s look at the latter, again.

The senior population is growing by leaps and bounds, mostly with more and more Baby Boomers heading into their golden years.

And, it has been established by the federal government and groups such as AARP, among others, that more and more senior citizens are lacking enough money — accounts, pensions, 401K — to sustain themselves.

They face lower standards of living (they know what it is to become “minimalists”), they face choices between eating and paying for health care, medicine or regular bills, and they have to accept the “good” news that they might have to work to make a few dollars here and there — possibly for the rest of their lives — just to make ends meet.

Knowing then that many of the elderly among us are also on what is called a “fixed” income (relying on Social Security or retirements that do not increase much, if at all, with inflation), consider what one such person from the Prescott area sent to me this past week:

Timber Ridge raised dues $60; the city wants to raise the sales tax; the state wants to raise the gas tax; CableOne raised their fees; APS wants to raise its fees … Is there no end to raising taxes and fees?

I wonder the same thing.

• GORSUCH – The Senate changing rules — to the Nuclear Option — Thursday to advance Judge Neil Gorsuch sets a serious precedent.

If Republicans “had” to do that to move the nomination forward, because Democrats would not budge, the same thing will happen in the next three years under President Trump, if more seats on the Supreme Court open.

However, if Dems had given this one to the Republicans, they would have had more to bargain with — “See, we gave you Gorsuch” — later. But now it will be business as usual for the GOP to fall back on the Nuclear Option (altering the number of votes needed to advance a nomination).

If they’re playing chess, they must be doing it with blindfolds and hands-off moves.

• BODY CAMS – Taser International stated Wednesday it will launch a program to equip every U.S. police officer with a body camera -- for free.

The grants by Taser (now known as Axon), according to CNBC, would also provide supporting hardware, software, data storage and training for one year.

Sounds great? Not so fast. That’s business – give it to them, get them dependent on it, then (after that one year) charge them for it. (Introductory rate followed by full price, for all police?)

That’s the way I see it, because local law enforcement officials who have said they cannot afford body cams refer mostly to the data storage and maintenance – the real costs – moving forward.

Crucial devices should not come in place of (wo)men patrolling the streets, which would ultimately be the tradeoff.

• PICK OF THE WEEK – (Proving there’s always something good to do in the Prescott area that’s cheap or free): Mountain Artists Guild Spring Bazaar, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, April 8-9, 228 Alarcon St., Prescott.

You’ve gotta see this!

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