Bernalillo: Let us tax more, but we won’t use the power…yet.

Bernalillo County will be lobbying the Legislature during the 2008 session for the ability to raise property taxes on County residents. Leaving aside whether it is proper for our elected representatives to use our tax money to further increase our taxes, this request, if fulfilled, will inevitably result in higher taxes, no matter what the County Commission might say.
Ostensibly, the increase is “necessary” to fund the jail and there are major problems with who places people in the jail and whether or not they are financially responsible for them. But, those problems should be addressed before the County simply sticks its hands further into taxpayers’ pockets.
Perhaps the most troubling aspect of the article in today’s Tribune is the expressed willingness of some of our political leaders to increase the gross receipts tax in lieu of the property tax. The gross receipts tax is simply the worst, most economically-destructive form of taxation here in New Mexico and further increasing it would hurt the Bernalillo County economy.