Senior citizens built this town. There would be no bridges, supermarkets, churches, school buildings, or hotels if tax-paying, working adults (who are now senior citizens) had not worked hard for our community.
In 1982 the City and Borough of Juneau Assembly voted to exempt seniors from sales tax in recognition of senior citizens’ considerable contribution to this vibrant city. The exemption was a promise made to us; it should not have been removed by people who have no cognizance of the valiant efforts made by tax-paying adults who, in time, became senior citizens.
Seniors live here and spend their money here. In 2015 seniors spent $46 million on goods and services in Juneau and were exempted from sales tax in the amount of $2.3 million. Let’s round up the money spent by seniors in 2016 and by the end of 2017 to $50 million each year. See how much money seniors are putting into Juneau’s economy?
There is your steady, continuing economic base paid by seniors. Don’t “kill the goose who laid the golden egg.” Be wise people and keep that steady retirement income flowing into Juneau businesses.
The senior tax exemption which City Fathers say is unsustainable is based on specious reasoning. Senior sales tax exemption can be covered by the new marijuana tax and by the tourist industry sales earnings for 2017 in the amount of $183 million.
In summary, seniors provide a steady economic base for our city. Honor and respect your senior citizens.
L. Henrietta Mason,