Where do you stand, Rep. Cline?

The most recent racial attack by our bigot-in-chief is, or at least should be, repulsive to all without regard to party affiliation.

And yet, our Sixth District congressman has said nothing (to my knowledge). Is this party over principle or does Rep. Ben Cline agree with the racist comments?

The residents of the Sixth District deserve an answer. All of the Sixth District deserves a representative who shares his beliefs with us openly and speaks truth, not empty platitudes.

WILLIAM CONNER

Lynchburg

Fiscal stress and taxes

The Virginia Commission on Local Government has just released the 2017 Fiscal Stress report. It should be understood it is a relative report as some believe we tax and spend too much while some others believe just the opposite.

It is no secret that Lynchburg is one of the highest fiscally stressed localities in the commonwealth, ranking the eighth-highest of 133 in the 2017 report. For the past 10 years Lynchburg’s average ranking was eighth-highest.

To compute the fiscal stress scores, the commission measures the revenue capacity (tax base), revenue extraction (governmental money raised) and the median household income.

For Lynchburg, revenue capacity was the 18th lowest, 10 years ago it ranked 46th lowest, and the 10-year-growth average was the 20th lowest. Troublesome, the report shows Lynchburg’s capacity growth rate from 2016 to 2017 the seventh-worst in the state.

Revenue extraction, or how much of the revenue capacity the government gets, ranks Lynchburg the seventh-highest in 2017, up from eighth-highest in 2016 and 11th-highest 10 years ago.

Median household income ranked Lynchburg 39th lowest in 2017, 42nd 10 years ago, and the 10-year-growth rate was the 51 slowest.

Recognizing the correct way to tax-base-building and not to more low cost housing that dilutes the per capita property values would be a good place to start. There are studies that show citizens demand more $1.60 in governmental services for every dollar they pay to the government while commercial properties demand about $0.28 for every $1 they pay.

JIM WEIGAND

Lynchburg

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