A small-town’s municipal government decided that one way to increase revenue was to lengthen all the major holidays.
“People will focus longer than one day on each holiday, so they will spend more money on gifts,” said City Mayor. “This will automatically result in more sales for local businesses and more tax revenue for our fair city.”
City Mayor made the comment during a City Council session, during which councilmen were focusing on the municipality’s economic woes. City Manager agreed with City Mayor’s proposal. “You’re so wise,” said City Manager. “That’s why you were chosen to be our mayor.
The proposal would lengthen the celebration of numerous holidays, including Christmas (four days), New Year’s (four days), Thanksgiving (four days), Fourth of July (seven days), and Valentine’s Day (14 days). The extended tax collection days would begin two days before the beginning of each holiday celebration and end two days after the conclusion of each designated holiday celebration.
According to the city’s charter, voters had to approve any tax increases before the proposal could become law. When the referendum was held, voters approved the proposal by a whopping 95 percent to five percent margin.
Local pastors and churches favored the new taxes. Big Church Pastor observed, “Owners of local businesses will earn much more money from their increased sales, so they will be significantly increasing their donations to the church.”
Small Church Pastor agreed. “Even the donations to the little church should go up quite a bit,” he stated.
One group of people, however, John and Jane Public, didn’t look very highly upon the new taxes. John Public noted, “I’ve never known of a tax that was instituted that ever was eliminated or was reduced. The new taxes are always eventually increased over a period of time.”
“You have hit the nail on the head,” said Jane Public. “It seems to me that taxes always come with a built-in growth component.”
Jane Public thought she had come up with a solution to the tax issue. “I think I’m going to attend the next meeting of the City Council,” she said. “I’m going to recommend that another referendum be held to change the recently approved law.”
“What changes do propose?,” questioned John Public.
“I propose that all of the holidays but one be eliminated from the law,” said Jane Public. “It’s really unnecessary for Christmas, New Year’s, Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July to be included in the law.”
“That only leaves Valentine’s Day,” said John Public. “Why not also eliminate that holiday and totally do away with the tax?
“The city does need additional tax revenue,” said Jane Public. “And if the law is properly promoted, there’ll enough additional Valentine’s Day sales to meet the city’s need for increased revenue. And, after all, love is what makes the world go around!”
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