Explain how taxes support specific public systems and structures.

firetruckFiretrucks, productive works, and strong communities: Amy Hanauer

The Plain Dealer April 14, 2013

In this guest column, Amy Hanauer, executive director of Policy Matters Ohio, tells the story of a smallish 2001 house fire that brought her to a greater appreciation for paying taxes. Hanauer’s piece does of a good job of explaining how taxes pay for specific public systems and structures by thanking the crossing guards, teachers, snowplow drivers, police officers and other who educate her kids, and protect her community. And, she refutes the perspective that cutting taxes grows jobs by explaining what tax cuts actually do–remove resources that people, communities and businesses rely upon. She also connects the dots between taxes and a strong economy when she points out that communities rely upon good infrastructure, good schools, excellent universities and diverse industries to get productive workers and a good quality of life and all those things require taxes. Read the full piece to see how Hanauer shares findings from her decade of tax policy research on the impact of income tax cuts. Here’s an exerpt from this piece:

Tax slashers often promote these cuts to “help business” or “grow jobs.” Here’s what they actually do: remove resources that people, communities and businesses rely on. That means fewer teachers, food inspectors, environmental and safety enforcers, park rangers and others who make our lives safer and better. It means potholes and bridges don’t get fixed, bike lanes don’t get built, court cases go untried, lines for services lengthen and road kill festers on the street for extra days.

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