Senior opting out of school tax, thanks to school board
March 28, 2010 01:00 AM | 2920 views | 6 6 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
DEAR EDITOR:

Like Allen Hirons, I was also in a quandary about "to pay or not to pay" school taxes when I turned 62. After all, the system was set up to relieve me of that responsibility as I got older and my income became smaller. The feds do the same thing with income taxes in that we get an additional deduction at age 65, and it seemed to me that there should be some relief after 30 plus years of taxation.

I've never been one to buy into "we are citizens of the world" silliness, but still felt somewhat guilty opting out of the school tax since the education of our children is a common interest. However, I took a good look at the tax. In my case it was more than $1,350 per year. I took further notice of the childish squabbles of the school board. I took more notice of its wasteful spending, seeming inefficiencies, top heavy bureaucracy, penchant for secrecy and finally determined not to invest any further money, especially when it's not required. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes said no citizen has an obligation to pay taxes for which he is not legally bound.

Luckily for the board, many seniors aren't aware of their option at age 62. I even had to explain it to a couple friends. Perhaps if the tax wasn't so egregiously high or the board and administration weren't so egregiously arrogant and foolish, I might change my mind, but those things aren't likely to change so I think I'll hang onto my money, thank you very much.

Mike Woodliff
Smyrna
Comments
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Enough Already
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July 25, 2010
Mike, you said it all poerfectly. Thanks.

I also think that parents of kids in non-public schools should be exempt from these taxes. Cobb gets terrible results for the money they get and it is time to change that. Return on investment is poor...change the Board, like any business.
Indian Joe
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March 30, 2010
Betty - I am assuming you mean "fund" raisers and not "fun" raisers. Believe me, for over 12 years I did my part at my son's school - back in the day when the PTA and parent involvement was needed every bit as much as today - and the parents stepped up to the plate, doing whatever was necessary. Don't know what school you are involved in, but maybe some publicity would help. From the looks of things people will go a long way for a garage sale.
betty whate
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March 30, 2010
We have fun raisers all the time, festivals, dinners, races, garage sales, selling wrapping paper, fund drives, you name it we do it.

Unlike when I was a kid, we had one main fun raiser a year - we sold Kripy Kream doughnuts.

Shame on you Indiana Joe, because apparently if you dont know about these fun raisers - you are not helping your local school!!!! We need all the help you can get!!

BTW - these foundations that Lori VV talks about are tax deductible too!!
Indian Joe
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March 29, 2010
What happened to fund raisers? I can remember Hickory Hills had Spooks and Spaghetti (later changed to just Spaghetti to be politically correct) at Halloween, athe Spring Fair in April, book drives, etc. and made enough money from these events to carpet the entire school, buy computers and playground equipment. Thiw ay if your kid goes to a school, you can count on the money staying in that school. Of course, that was back in the days when parents cared about their kid's education, everyone spoke English, adn there was no need for so much money going to groups that contributed nothing to the bottom line. But it is still an option, at least for some schools - and it was great family time.
East Cobb Mom
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March 29, 2010
I second Lori VV's suggestion. It will let you make a direct impact on your neighborhood school. Those foundations work closely with the school and their teachers to try to fill the gaps, and there will be many in the next year. They are highly motivated to make every dollar they get go as far as it can, so you are much more likely to get a real bang for your buck.
Lori VV
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March 28, 2010
Hey Mike - Pick a school and donate directly to them. Many schools have foundations that pick up where the county comes up short.

Many schools pay for teachers, instruments, computer programming to name a few.

These foundations are run by parent volunteers, there is no overhead.

Check out some school foundations and donate what you want to donate - they would sure appreciate it.

You could even donate your time - with lack of funding coming our way, I'm sure your local school could use your help
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