Monday, March 9, 2009

Where's Our Bailout from Rapacious Local Government Revenue-Sucking Schemes?

It can be said that even the victims of predatory lending get something out of the deal, if only for a time.

But the hapless victims of the Wilmington, Delaware government's revenue predators are only bled and extorted, effectively robbed by force of "law" or even the point of a gun...

...In this case the sheriff's...who has the grim duty of auctioning off properties Wilmington government is seizing from citizens unable to come up with 10's of 1000's of $$ in ex post facto vacant property fees.

The much-touted vacant property fine program has made the City government the holder of more parcels in Wilmington than any other landowner. It is just another one of many meat-grinder gotcha revenue scams that only hurt the little guy.

With all the rage to demonize free enterprise and free markets and those evil rich people, where is the outrage from 'government-is-the-answer' do-gooders about the punitive abuses of local governments that just outright fleece citizens of lower or modest means?

Here is video testimony from one aspiring entrepreneur, Mr. Richard Dyton (sp?), who is being bled dry by the Wilmington / Baker government. He addressed Wilmington City Council on March 5, 2009.

Tomorrow (Tuesday, March 10, 2009) 100's of 1000's of dollars of this man's money, blood, sweat, and tears go on the chopping block of a sheriff sale.

This gentleman is amazingly composed and humble, considering what he is up against. His pleas say more than I ever could :

It doesn't matter that Mr. Dyton can't come up with the money or that he is doing everything possible to carry on, in spite of the cruelly-robotic indifference of City Solicitor John Sheridan and Finance Director Ron Morris.

The Baker administration's greedy hogs are intent on grabbing as much loot and land from the community as they can, no matter who gets steamrolled.

Mr. Dyton is but one person who decided to get up and make a public plea. But there are many more individuals I personally know, all unwilling to go public for fear of reprisals, who have already been crushed and dispossessed of their property by the City government's bullies.

They are victims of the Wilmington city government's thug mentality : "pay up or it's ours...all nice and legal-like. And by the way, we'll be back for more."

Meanwhile the Wilmington government funnels multi-million dollar subsidies to wealthy monopolist developers Buccini-Pollin :

"WILMINGTON -- City Council voted Thursday to borrow up to $15.5 million for a de facto grant program for developers who want to restore the upper levels of downtown properties on Market Street.
The money for the Market Street Upstairs program comes at a time when the city is facing a $9 million deficit.

Likely recipients include Buccini-Pollin Group Inc., which plans to renovate 25 properties into offices, stores and apartments. About $3 million of the $15.5 million is targeted for the Queen Theater, the cornerstone of Buccini-Pollin's Market Street plan. The longtime vacant movie house will be a performing-arts center." - News Journal - March 6, 2009

I wonder has anyone checked whether Buccini-Pollin is paying fees on all of their vacant condos and townhouses?

Sheesh, who needs the Mob when you have the Baker administration?

Its abuses epitomize why government should be the first thing we strictly regulate, before it ever undertakes to regulate us.


Anonymous said...

Disgusting and despicable.

Thanks for posting this, Tyler.

Was or will there be any action or follow-up?


Tyler Nixon said...

Several councilmembers immediately responded to Mr. Dyton, saying they need to revisit this program, given the economic climate.

They were Charles Potter, Jr., Michael Brown, Justen Wright, and Trippi Congo. (The last two are newly-elected and young, so it is a hopeful sign for the city government's future if these younger officials were being earnest and continue in the same vein they expressed.)

Trippi specifically asked what could be done to help this man by Tuesday.

I don't have any further info, but I hope there was a stay of "execution".

Thanks for your comments.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the follow-up.

If people want to email members of the City Council to express their opinions about this, they can go here:

Click on the Council Members link and then on the individual Council Member to get an e-mail link. You can also e-mail the Mayor from there.

Please be polite. :)

It may help or not, but it will let them know that people are watching.

Bearing witness to injustice is important.