To paraphrase Sir Paul McCartney: Someone’s knocking at the door, somebody’s ringing the bell – do yourself a favor, ask them some hard questions, and don’t let the CPA in.
Over the past few weeks CPA (Question #5) proponents have been knocking on our doors, dropping their expensive literature, and trying to persuade us to adopt an unwarranted 2% surcharge tax to fund yet to be determined projects.
I’ve received several phone calls and emails questioning the “information” being disseminated. Sadly, the said information is deceptive, distorted, laden with half-truths, and even outright bold faced lies.
So when CPA Proponents knock at your door ask them the following.
Can this surcharge tax be passed on to renters? I’ve had several reports of tenants being told the surcharge tax won’t affect them.
And commercial properties, like stores and restaurants will also pay this surcharge. In fact since they’re taxed at a higher rate, they will pay even more!
What specific projects will the money be spent on in the first 5 years? Don’t settle for we could do this or we could do that. Demand that the door knocker tell you exactly what projects they intend to spend the money on?
Ask them how much will each project cost? How many estimates did they get for each project? How long will each project take? How does each project benefit ALL Watertown residents?
These questions just scratch the surface in comparison to the scrutiny all other projects undergo during the normal appropriation process for a municipal budget. But I’ll guarantee you the friendly sweat-talking door-knocker won’t answer these questions – because he or she CAN’T! Why? Because the CPA doesn’t work that way. If Question #5 passes, special interests get to TAX FIRST and answer these questions later!
Here is a question they can and should answer: What’s your full name and where do you live?
Why ask that question?
Well because Watertown CPA may be importing experienced and possible expensive operatives to supplement their operation.
A Newton-based corporation has thus far sent out two very, very, expensive, high gloss, multi-colored, professional mailings to Watertown voters. I’ve seen the third that should be in mailboxes soon. These mailers probably range in cost from $5,000 on the lowest end to more than $10,000 (depending on the size of the mailing list). EACH!!! So where is this money, at least $15,000 – possibly $30,000 – or more coming from and why?
With the money being spent on mailers, here is another question your door-knocker should be able to answer:
Ask him or her if they’re being paid directly to knock on your door? And then ask them if they get a paycheck from an organization that promotes the CPA? After all, a Newton-based special interest, has been lobbying Watertown voters heavily. This corporation goes by the name Metro West CD Inc. The question needs to be posed to the alleged volunteer when he or she comes a knocking.
Who does Metro West CD Inc. or any other group involved represent? Where do they get their money?
Well, let me tell you what we do know. The executive director of Metro West DC Inc. is a one of the most active CPA peddlers in Watertown. Her name is Jennifer Van Campen and she is a Watertown resident but it’s pretty obvious that since she draws an executive salary from this corporation she stands to benefit personally. You see this is a development firm that specializes in publicly subsidized housing. In fact they’ve purchased and now rent out at least two properties in Watertown.
With time so short before the election, I was unable to do more research or get more answers. But trust me, these special interests will be fully exposed sooner or later. I will not let this go!
Folks there is lot of money to be made from CPA contracts. Reasonable people ought to be seriously concerned, anytime such massive amounts of money is being spent on local ballot measure that involves raising taxes. Especially when the proponents have not been forthcoming with reasonable answers to reasonable questions.
Someone’s knocking at your door… they’re not political activists promoting a cause. They may be salesmen and women selling the CPA. Do yourself a favor, don’t let the CPA in. Vote No on Question #5 November 8, conveniently hidden on the back and bottom of the ballot!