Editor, Daily News
I wrote a Letter to the Editor in fall 2013 asking for your signatures to place a voter referendum on the November 2014 ballot regarding the automatic gas tax increase. For those of you who signed the petition, thank you! Now for the bad news. We have to do this all over again.
Last year, the State Legislature required 67,000 signatures to place the voter referendum on the ballot. Signature gatherers throughout the state submitted 120,000 signatures. The final hurdle was a vote by the Legislature. One-party rule in this state refused to act on it. Under the initiative petition process, if the repeal was not approved by the Legislature by May 6, 2014, proponents must gather another 11,485 signatures by June 18, 2014, in order for the question to appear on the November ballot. This means we must gather additional signatures, just in case we were not serious enough about the petition drive in 2013.Read more
QUABBIN AREA DROWNS...AGAIN
Editor, Daily News
I can't remember a time in my eight years as a selectman when I was more frustrated with the one-party rule on Beacon Hill.
Well, they've done it again - drowning the towns in the Quabbin area, not with water like they did in 1938. This time we're being drowned in a sea of red ink from serial local aid cuts over five years, and we can't even debate it!Read more
Many activists locally and across the state have been working for two months gathering signatures to repeal the new gas tax, which has been linked to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This means that the tax will go up with the CPI. Our legislators will never have to vote to increase our gas tax, it will just happen automatically. If the CPI drops, the tax remains. It only increases and never decreases. If the proper number of signatures is obtained, this matter will be brought to the voters in November 2014. Please help us have our voice heard.
Increases in gasoline prices affect working families, especially in this region as most of us have to travel to work. Increases in gasoline prices will be reflected in groceries, and other goods as surcharges will increase with the cost of gasoline. Local small businesses will pay more for delivery of raw materials and shipment of finished product, affecting their bottom line and their ability to grow.
We vote for legislators to represent us. Voting a tax that will automatically increase removes all accountability from those who are paid to represent us. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to find a place to sign the repeal petition or look for people in downtown Athol on Saturday November 9th. The November 20th deadline for gathering signatures is fast approaching. Please help if you can.
Susannah Whipps Lee