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STATE THROWS US CRUMBS WITH SALES-TAX SUSPENSION

All of the hoopla, ultimately from Albany, about this past week's suspension of the sales tax on clothing is far more than we should have to bear.

First, the State Legislature announced that instead of suspending the tax permanently for all clothing, it would apply only to some items and would take effect Dec. 1. That was a pittance, but at least it was a permanent pittance. Or so we were led to believe.

Then, wanting more of our money to spend, the State Legislature postponed that permanent pittance until March 1, 2000. Supposedly in return, those who claim to be our representatives gave us two temporary one-week suspensions -- one in September and one in January 2000.

So our legislators took away three months of tax relief and gave us two weeks, reinstating the tax for the Christmas shopping season. Thanks for the crumbs. And who's to say there won't be more postponements, more crumbs?

This is a tax hike, not a tax cut. And make no mistake: This is just another way the state legislators are keeping the tax in place, so they can get more of our money. They've just proven they're not serious about getting rid of this tax, which is what they should have done in the first place.

RANDY ELF

Lakewood

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