As a hunter and fisherman from way back in my days of West Virginia youth, I’m partial to the idea of sportsmen paying to help protect wildlife habitats. It’s the best way to keep the sports of hunting and fishing vibrant. We get something for the money we pay.
But Minnesota’s call to increase the state sales tax to pay for wildlife and arts programs under something called the Legacy Act is a bad idea. Money-grubbing lawmakers eventually will find a way to get their hands on that money for other reasons.
Wildlife programs should be funded by licensing fees and other dedicated revenue-raisers with a direct connection to the ultimate goal. It’s never a good idea to raise general taxes for specific purposes because it just invites more tax hikes down the road as special interests fight over the pot of money.
As for funding arts programs, if new taxes ain’t for readin’, writin’ and arithmetic, you won’t find any support for them in these quarters. I’m reluctant to fork over more money even for those core subjects to education bureaucrats who have screwed up our school sytems beyond belief. We home-school for a reason.
Governments actually need to give tax breaks to people like us because under the current system, we’re paying for our children’s education twice — once for schools they don’t attend and then again for the books and other expenses to give them a better education at home.