, Corbin, KY

March 30, 2012

J.M. Hall’s comments about occupational tax are clueless

The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — Jeff Noble wrote an excellent article Wednesday about the political maneuvering being done by Sen. Robert Stivers and his bully mentor David Williams. They have offered amendments to block Corbin’s lawsuit to gain a rightful share of the occupational taxes paid by Corbin businesses and workers within Corbin’s Knox County city limits. I applaud Mayor McBurney and the city leaders for standing up for Corbin’s citizens and businesses.

Knox County Judge/Executive J.M. Hall commented, “If Corbin wants to collect an occupational tax on city residents who live in the county that’s their problem.” In other words he suggests Corbin add on another 1 percent on top the current 1 percent. Doesn’t he know the businesses in that area and the workers in that area are the ones who would have to pay an additional 1 percent tax?

I have always believed workers and businesses should not be hit with extra taxes. Judge Hall’s comments are clueless in knowing that we must help our businesses be competitive and our workers be able to buy groceries and help their families. Judge Hall should care about jobs and income for our working people.

The people of Corbin in Knox County are not to blame for the total mismanagement of Knox County and Barbourville. Corbin is the only city in Kentucky and likely the U.S. in which businesses and workers in one city pay local taxes that go to another city. This is taxation without representation! Many people who live in West Knox County have told me the county leaders don’t care anything about them.

I am going to ask three middle school eighth graders to meet for two hours and come up with a common sense set of recommendations for a fair arrangement for sharing the Knox County occupational tax issue among Barbourville, Corbin and Knox County. I am confident they can do a much better job than the leaders of Knox County and Barbourville and they won’t charge legal fees. I will give each student $50 and their school $150 for this work. Sen. Stivers, Sen. Williams, and Knox County should get them some eighth graders to help them make decisions. I will provide the Times-Tribune the results of the work of the three eighth graders.

Bob Terrell,