(An open letter to elected members of the DeSoto County Board of Education and Superintendent Cory Uselton)
We, the members of the DeSoto County Conservative Coalition, wish to express our disappointment with the recent actions by the Board of Education, at the apparent urging of Superintendent Cory Uselton, voting to raise property taxes upon the citizens of our County. Raising taxes should always be an absolute last resort any elected body chooses as a source to overcome excessive spending of the public’s money.
According to the data provided in the legal notice, the Ad Valorem revenues will increase this year alone by 7.25 percent over last year. Although the data is not immediately available, we are certain previous years have experienced similar results. The U.S. national rate of inflation has only averaged around 2.5 percent over the last several years. Education spending in DeSoto County is increasing at rates far above inflation and normal costs of living. It is our opinion that this represents a spending problem, not a revenue problem.
In the past week, Mr. Uselton and several elected Board of Education members have been responding that the Board of Supervisors had previously taken away 1.5 mills of education funding, and this change to add back 1.5 mills is only taking the rate back to the level it was before. Multiple communications with the Board of Supervisors reflect this is factually incorrect.
We urge the School Board to call an emergency meeting to have transparent discussions on the merits of this tax increase that it is forcing upon the members of the DeSoto County Board of Supervisors and the citizens of DeSoto County.
Tom Minyard, Chairman
Melissa Goucher, Treasurer
Robin Cotten, Board Member
Mary C. Cotten, DCCC Member