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New Castle County Executive Chris Coons : A Rich Little Tax Raising Democrat

Well, it looks like another domino is falling in the chain of tax-raising Democrat autocracy that is government most anywhere in Delaware, with city, county, state, and federal government all solidly in the hands of tax more, borrow more, spend more Democrat politicians.

(Sorry, folks, but when you show me a government official from the Republican or any other non-Democrat political party in Delaware, or nationally, who is looking to raise taxes on the struggling citizenry I will gladly blast them just as forcefully).

On the heels of Wilmington Mayor Baker's promise that the city government will raise "taxes, fees, and anything we can", now comes blow # 2 to the double-taxed Wilmington residents, as well as a blow to all other home and property owners in New Castle County : a WHOPPING 25% increase in property tax rates.

Coons Seeks 25% Property Tax Hike
The News-Journal March 18, 2009

If approved by County Council, the tax hike would be the second biggest in county history and would raise an extra $21 million to help balance the $234 million budget for the 2010 fiscal year that begins July 1.

The average annual property tax bill would rise by about $100 to $501. Coons' spending plan also calls for a 10 percent increase in sewer fees.

The overall budget reflects the impact of the recession, particularly in housing. The county has depended heavily for years on a share of the statewide real estate transfer tax to balance its budget. Revenues from that tax have plummeted as home sales swooned.

"I think we've just gone overboard -- we've overspent," said civic leader Frances West, noting that residents will have to adjust to having less. "It's like raising kids. If you give them luxuries and then take them away, they're not going to be happy.

Coons' spending plan would trim personnel costs by $4.8 million, an amount he said could be achieved by laying off 75 to 100 employees.


If layoffs are needed, they would occur across the board and include public safety services such as police and paramedics.

Coons said he is continuing to negotiate with the county's six unions to see whether they would accept furloughs or some other form of payroll reductions.

So far, the unions have balked at Coons' proposed furloughs, suggesting that taxes instead be raised to save county jobs.

Personnel costs account for more than three-fourths of the county's spending.

News that Democrat Chris Coons intends to jack up property taxes on us all to make his political accommodations is no surprise. He is a personally very-rich Democrat, freshly-re-elected, making a tidy 6-figure paycheck on the public's backs while trying to carve himself out an incumbency career in Delaware politics.

Property taxes are but pocket change to someone as wealthy as Coons. Coons lives at 2301 Delaware Avenue in a nearly-4200 square foot, 6-bedroom, 4-bath stone mansion that sits on nearly half an acre of land in the high-dollar Highlands neighborhood in Wilmington. To give you a sense of the value, the property sold in 1981 for $225,000.00. Of course, what Coons paid for it is masked by a deed that cleverly states a purely-nominal sale price of $ 10.

Clearly Coons has no compassion for how close so many New Castle County residents are cutting it these days just to survive, much less afford to keep our homes.
I happen to be one such resident.

I live in a rather energy-inefficient drafty old house
built in 1886 in what was not too long ago a largely a crime-infested ghetto in a low-income census tract a stone's throw from downtown Wilmington. I have been struggling gradually to restore and modernize it for several years. I also run my own law practice out of it.

Every single penny counts and every extra bit of increased taxation hurts my efforts to eke out a living much less improve my home.

A "
$100 to $501" average annual tax increase may not seem like much to those in the Delaware Democrat government protectorate, but such a massive single tax hike really heaps insult upon injury to the residents of New Castle County.

We are not insulated from the economic downturn the way the government elites like Coons can and do insulate themselves. We have no choice but to pay however much more the Coons Democrat county government decides it wants to coerce from us.

Wilmington residents like me will have to add Coonsies' increased property taxes to the (likely to increase) property taxes we also pay to the City of Wimington for all the services that the county would otherwise provide us but doesn't and for which Wilmingtonians nonetheless still pay New Castle County.

Yes that's right, folks. Many people outside Wilmington don't know that Wilmington property owners are
double-taxed on our property, paying both City and County property taxes, though we only receive the 'services' of the city government!

Shame on you, Mr. Coons. While you have talked a good game about cutting here and there (with paltry personnel cost reductions a measly 2%) it is obvious you are more interested in servicing the bloat you and your Democrat party have made of county government, flowing out of the same government-centric mind that drives the lard-laden Wilmington patronage government racket.

You are clearly capitulating to the organized labor fatasses who dominate the Democrat party, who you need for any political future in it, and who are more than happy to exploit higher property taxes, holding hostage most peoples' biggest life investment : our homes, in order to continue theirs and your cozy ride on the public gravy train.


Coons needs to tighten county government's oversized belt a helluva lot more. He needs to stop fearmongering with threats of public safety cuts. And he needs to tell the unions exactly where they can put their demands before hijacking yet more money from the citizenry.

No government should be immune from sharing in the severe economic constriction we are seeing now, especially and most severely reflected in the depressed values of the very housing upon which Coons wants to up the tax ante.

Coons must be wagering we'll all forget about these tax increases when he comes around again for our votes for whatever office he next seeks. (Don't count on it, buddy.)

I can hardly wait to see what tax hikes Jack Markell and the Democrat-run General Assembly have in store for us, to address the $606,000,000.00 budget shortfall they claim must be filled to keep Delaware's bloated state government rolling in clover.

I would be ecstatic to be proven wrong about this but I will not be holding my breath. I have a sinking feeling that the state tax domino will be the next to fall right on top of us, along with the myriad other Democrat tax increases we are seeing from top to bottom.

Contact your County Councilperson and tell them NO TAX INCREASES IN NEW CASTLE COUNTY!


Hube said…
SUPERB post, Tyler!! Our daughter is a few years away from college so we're saving every dime ... and now we gotta deal with f***in' Coons' idiocy.

Tyler Nixon said…
Thanks, Hube.

I commend you. I can't imagine facing the cost of higher education today. The sacrifices middle and lower income parents are having to make today to see their children get the best education possible is almost incomprehensible.

To be bled dry by multiple parasitic government all at the same time, so they can keep things going for themselves nu whatever coercion it takes, is just beyond nauseating.
Anonymous said…

Did it ever occur to you that a majority of citizens might prefer a tax increase over losing government services like parks and libraries?

This actually happens to be the opinion of many many people.

Writing a post like this without saying what specific services you would cut in the absence of additional revenues to balance the budget is demagoguery, plain and simple.

Of course, it is easy to scream about taxes while avoiding the hard choices that those who actually govern have to make.

Anonymous said…
anonone: Hard choices by those who govern? Those who got us into the situation in the first place?

Spare us the sympathy.
Anonymous said…
I was thinking about this last night. I think we need a service's user profile where we see what percentage of county residents sue each service. Obviously, sewers are going to be the top. Work the way backwards and see which service the smallest percentage of residents use and cut the most there.

Sure parks are a nice to have, but seriously about 20% of residents use the parks on a regular basis. And the county needs to get out of the golf course business. Sell the courses either for development or something. They are a huge drain on cash flow.
Anonymous said…
Why isnt government too big to fail? Because that is what we are seeing, government's oversized and overspent and now printing money on the backs of the citizens.
Tyler Nixon said…
Writing a post like this without saying what specific services you would cut in the absence of additional revenues to balance the budget is demagoguery, plain and simple.

Bullshit. It's not my job to do Chris Coons's job.

It's on him to justify a $242,000,000 government such that tax increases are needed.

Somehow I doubt "parks and libraries" are a seriously-substantial chunk of that.

You and Perry are two of a kind : we relinquish the validity of opposition to tax increases by not dancing to your tune about what should be cut.

Opposition is only valid if you are an expert on the massive county budget?

Anonymous said…
It's not my job to do Chris Coons's job.

And that is exactly what he is doing, the job he was elected by a 58% majority to do.

Opposition without offering a real alternative solution is demagoguery. I am really surprised that you can't see that.

It is amusing to repubs like you scream about cutting taxes and balancing budgets when they haven't a clue on how to do it.
Tyler Nixon said…
Keep spouting bullshit and ducking the question. Every time I have made specific cut proposals you (or your alter ego Perry) never respond. So drop the tired tactic.

Believe me, pay me six figures and make me county executive and you'll get more cuts than you'd ever want. That you'd doubt that for a second is clearly wilful igorance.


By the way, Coons faced no general election opponent. He was elected by Democrat party fiat. Much as this gratifies your own partisan monomania, the Democrat primary is not a "58% majority" of NCC voters.
Anon 3/19 7:41 AM says:

Work the way backwards and see which service the smallest percentage of residents use and cut the most there.

This seems almost too sensible :)).

I remember a few years ago under the previous (I believe) NCC leadership the Rockwood Ice Cream festival was cut for budget reasons. There was some small protest, but really, what business does the government have in funding something like that, and how important is it REALLY to the people?

Your idea makes perfect sense, which means it will never be applied :))).
Tyler Nixon said…
I agree Shirley. Massively increased user fees at parks and libraries would be most equitable for whoever wants these services to pay for them.

Pay as you go...rather than this always keep it all going, at any cost and charged to every damn taxpayer.
Anonymous said…
Great ideas, Shirley and Tyler!

How many residents ACTUALLY USE fire stations? Hardly any, so lets get rid of them. Or we can charge user fees on a per fire basis and then seize their property when they can't pay!

Special education? Not many students - GONE!

University funding? Not many residents benefit - GONE!

I am sure that you can think of others.

And your idea about making public services available only to the wealthy who can afford them is brilliant. We'll get the taxpayers to fund the projects, but charge high fees to keep the riffraff out once they are built.

You guys are thinking.

Anonymous said…
Sorry, Tyler, I wasn't ducking your post @ 11:06 - I just missed it.

In regards to your suggested cuts - I don't recall seeing any in your posts on this topic.

In regards to:

Believe me, pay me six figures and make me county executive and you'll get more cuts than you'd ever want.

I am quite certain that is true, and that is why you'll never be elected. People actually like, and are willing to pay for, government services.

The 58% was his general election percentage in 2004, which was contested by an R.

Tyler Nixon said…
People actually like, and are willing to pay for, government services.

You're like the king of straw man generalizations.

First it's "people" (who, you? everyody? ALL people?).

Then its "government services" (all of them? bar none?).

You say people like services. Well, no shit, Sherlock.

People also like butterflies and rainbows and unicorns. The question is how much "people" will be fleeced to support the ones you seem to like or the ones that are not truly needed, if they are even services at all.

Not all people want all services, and certainly not all government spending is on services people want or need, at least enough to pay through the nose over and over and over.

At what point is government too big to succeed?

You basically are a big, deep, and wide government defender, under all circumstances, anon.

Oh, and sorry I won't be like you and your fellow Democrats, lying to people that I will save them by taxing them and doling out every freebie, and then some.

If this means not being elected, well I guess the people get what they deserve. Unfortunately your ideology is based on using government to inflict your creeping scams and schemes on all of us, without escape.

'You'll pay for OUR government, no matter how big and fat we want it or how much it costs you.'
Anonymous said…
You basically are a big, deep, and wide government defender, under all circumstances, anon.

Actually, no, I am not. But I think that there is more finesse to governing than thinking "cut taxes" is the solution for every problem.

And, yes, virtually ALL people like government services, including you.

Not all people want all services, and we have elections to select the people we want to represent our interests, including keeping the services we want and stopping the ones we don't.

That is the way our system works.
Tyler Nixon said…
"cut taxes" is the solution for every problem.

Gosh, that's funny because this whole post is about NOT RAISING taxes. I'll settle for that, much less tax CUTS.

Oh, that's right, the uber-liberal government-centric view holds that not raising taxes is the same thing as cutting taxes.

My bad.
Anonymous said…
To "Anonone" and anyone else supporting a tax increase: Folks should probably be careful what they wish for. Coons is going for his 3rd tax increase in just over 3 years. He has already started the rhetoric for another tax increase again next year. Seemingly it will not stop. With respect to services, I don't think they are the issue. Wasteful spending is an issue. NCC will sole-source its procurement process. NCC will specify common items that cannot be obtained locally or from multiple vendors - only from 1-vendor (that happens to be on the West coast). NCC pays 2-3 times what you, I or any other government agency would pay. It is basic waste - it needs to stop. NCC Management: Coons has increased the size of his government with several high level people and equally high salaries. NCC had guaranteed raises of 8% for each of the first 10-years of employment - far exceeding inflation. NCC has several employees that do absolutely nothing. 75% of Coon's costs is employees. Again, fix the waste within your own system with clear proven steps. Once Coons has proven/shown this "waste" is fixed, then come see me about a third tax increase.
Anonymous said…
This is unbelievable, Coon's mother and stepfather own W. L. Gore and Company (Gore Tex). They are mulitmillionares, Chris Coons does not know what it is like to work for a living.

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