Bush: No such thing as a free lunch

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I have watched county politics and economics play out over the last couple of years with a sense of frustration. I realize that we like to spend taxpayer's money a lot differently than we spend our own. We simply have costs that exceed our revenue and the solution is to ask people to pay for these things that they neither want nor can afford.

You can't streamline any operation or recommend any reduction of a service. That would affect someone's pay or their department. The individual that is being asked to take the cut is usually surprised that you even asked. They assume you are making a personal attack knowing that local government is not some faceless entity. I know that county government is made up of people in our communities and they have families that rely upon us to pay them. However, there is no such thing as a free lunch and nobody needs to work for free.

Our community is uniquely connected and we need a limited form of services. In the free market when competition is involved we have the freedom to choose. We decide on how much to pay for the service or the good that we desire. It is your money to spend. It is you that makes the decision. When we ask citizens to pay for things that they neither need nor desire this creates conflict over the fair market value over the transaction.

Services that are being provided without the consideration of market competition become another faceless entity. It is easy for us blame, but the boards and committees are also made up of people. They decide everyday how best to utilize your resources and taking your resources by monopolistic methods create even more conflict.

Without changing economic directions we will continue to want widespread sacrifice within our community for a few concentrated benefits. We have ineffective organizational structure that does not match the fiscal capacity of our community. I want concentrated sacrifice in order get widespread benefits. Remember there is no such thing as a free lunch. Someone is paying for it.

4th District County Commissioner

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Brent Bush, letter to editor
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