Residents of Clarence must plant money trees
I just finished planting another money tree. Like the majority of my Clarence neighbors, my property assessment went way up. This new tax bite now requires residents to possess a money orchard.
Why, you ask? One reason is that even with declining enrollment, the Clarence teachers were given a 3 percent raise on top of their yearly step increases. And at the same meeting that the music department bemoaned their lack of funding, the superintendent himself claimed a nice plump raise.
It’s not only the cost of Clarence schools. We have dozens of fire trucks for a handful of fires. These are housed in shiny, sprawling volunteer firefighter campuses that sport workout rooms, banquet halls, ball diamonds, spacious parking lots and impressive acreage, all which require maintenance and upkeep.
We in Clarence pay more for our trash collection – being the only major suburb that allows for several companies rather than one low bidder. That traffic adds to more wear and tear on our roads. We get nothing for our recyclables and enjoy a daily blizzard of paper and plastic blowing about our streets.
So, you may wonder, where is our government? Well, our town fathers know we are too lazy to get involved or bother to vote. Any official who criticizes the status quo is easily defeated thanks to big turnout by firefighters and teachers, because fewer than 20 percent of us show up for primary elections.
So, what? We live in a third-ring suburb and by the time the abandoned homes, crime and poverty reach us, we’ll be settled in Florida or taking that long nap in the funeral home.
Everything is just ducky in Clarence, as long as your money tree stays green.
Joseph N. Weiss, Ph.D.