Letter: Legislation suggestion

Aug. 16, 2014 @ 11:20 PM

To the editor:

The N.C. Association of County Commissioners is seeking legislative goals for the 2015-2016 legislative cycle. Our board of commissioners has asked the public to submit their ideas for legislative goals to the board by Aug. 25. The following is my suggestion.

Vance County has a rich history of currently elected county commissioners, city council members and school board members who do not pay their personal, business or partnership property taxes by the due date. In some cases the property taxes have languished unpaid for years. These elected officials are empowered to raise and spend other people’s tax money; not theirs since they don’t pay their taxes.

To better inform the voter, legislation should be enacted requiring annual public attestation by elected officials and candidates for office as to the status of their personal, business and partnership property taxes. The attestation would simply state that as of most recent due date all property taxes owed by the elected official or candidate for office were paid in full or are in arrears as of the due date. Falsely attesting to the status would be a felony.

Requiring those elected and candidates for election to attest publicly of their compliance to pay their property taxes in full by the due date better informs the voters in whose hands acceptance or rejections of that behavior should rest.

Michael Bobbitt