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News Opinion Readers Respond

Stormwater fee will hurt small business

Just when you thought Annapolis had run out of new ways to tax us, now we're all going to be hit again with the accurately named "rain tax" ("Anger grows over stormwater fees," April 16).

Of course, the editors of The Sun think this is just wonderful and sorely needed to pay for all the new storm drains, collection ponds, stream restorations and so on mandated the E.P.A.

Funny though, how it was only a couple of years ago that we were told the major cause of pollution in the bay was manure from chicken farms and agricultural run-off on the Eastern Shore. In fact, a lawsuit was brought against one of the big factory farms that supplies Perdue, much to the dismay of our governor, who openly spoke out against it.

Well, that lawsuit failed so, I guess they had to find a new offender. And — you guessed it — it's all of us!

What about the "flush tax" that we are already paying ? Where did all of that money go? Remember, the tax was supposed to help pay for cleaning up of the bay. I guess money that got used somewhere else, like the money from the transportation fund.

But don't worry, a single family homeowner in Baltimore County will only have to pay an additional $39 a year — chump change compared to all the other taxes they're hitting us with.

Churches and non-profits will pay a greatly reduced fee, but here's the real kicker: All government buildings and properties will be exempt from the tax.

So the folks who are really going to get slammed by this tax are small business owners — companies that own shopping malls, apartment buildings or any other place of business with a parking lot.

We're talking thousands of dollars for each of the offending entities, and who do you think these costs will be passed on to? Us.

Mark Wilson, Fallston

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