To the Editor:

The 2018 proposed St. Clair County budget has been posted on the county website along with the 2018 PBC (Public Building Commission) budget for MidAmerica Airport.

You will see that that the 2016 budget after the audit had a deficit of $7,329,783. The 2017 budget has not yet been audited but there was deficit spending again in 2017. Now, the 2018 proposed budget continues to project deficit spending of $1 million-plus. Although some cuts have been made. the 2018 proposed general fund spending is still $1,478,866 more than 2017 or 4.43 percent.

What can you do if you don't want your property taxes to increase in 2018?

Call your county board representative and tell them to vote NO on the 2018 proposed budget during the county board meeting on Dec. 18.

What if you don't know who your county board representative is?

Call the County Clerk's office at 618-277-6600 extension 2377 and they will look up who it is and provide the member's phone number, determined by where you live.

Explain to your county board representative that you know we are not Madison County which recently passed a 2018 budget with a property tax decrease along with an increase in public safety spending after bi-partisan work of their county board members.

Ask them: "Why can't we do the same here in St. Clair County?"

Common reasons they may give you for why we can't do the same here in St. Clair County include such things as "we don't have Amazon warehouses," "they are smaller than us," they have fewer TIFs," "they have fewer Veteran property tax exemptions," "they have less crime, etc."

However, we do have an airport, and they don't.

We in St. Clair County need to stop spending more than we take in and stop waiting for state payments that may never arrive. A balanced budget will help everyone in the country. How long has it been since we have had a balanced budget?

To all taxing bodies: It's time to stop this addiction to OPM (Other People's Money). Stop increasing our property taxes and start living within our means.

Fred Boch, County Board District 23 representative

O'Fallon

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