Vol. 9, No. 16 – May 11 – May 24, 2016 – Mailbox


Sales taxes increased by 5.9% over the last year but the City Council is still considering taxing Venturans more. The City Council is using the argument that it wants a locally kept and locally spent tax. They fail to understand that $340 out of a household budget is still $340.  They fail to see other taxes are also increasing.

Medicare tax from 1.45% to 2.35%, Income Tax rate from 35% to 39.6%, Payroll tax from 37.4% to 52.2%, Capital gain tax from 15% to 28%, Dividend tax from 15% to 39.6%, Estate taxes from 0% to 55% and Real Estate transaction tax of 3.5% was added. There will also be a transportation tax and a school bond tax on the ballot.

City government has $20 million more in real property taxes and sales taxes than 7 years ago. Add to that the 34% water rate increase; imposed without your affirmative vote, which raised millions. They have enough money.

How has the City Council invested your money? $2.0m WAV project; $1.0m to narrow Victoria; $1.0m for the 911 tax, never refunded; $9.0m for a Convention Center, never happened; $8.0M for the aquatics center, never completed; $12m in savings since 1992, has never grown; $50m to settle an environmental lawsuit, done in closed session, and $5.M to promote Ventura the Art City.

This is a question of trust and truthfulness. Past City Councils have broken promises and have redirected or had the spending changed by future City Councils.

The point is that you can’t rely on any City Council to spend another $20.0m of our money tax dollars.

With a budget surplus and taxes growing, this Ventura City Council must operate within its budget, just as citizens do with their 34% higher water rates. Tell the City Council no to higher taxes.

Robert J. Alviani

Ventura Breeze

Brooks Institute and the City of Ventura are both very happy with the deal that was done to relocate Brooks to downtown Ventura.  Looking beyond this move, it may have created an even greater opportunity for the County of Ventura, City of Ventura, and other West County Cities to help solve a serious problem.  It’s a problem that everyone talks about with minimal positive results – Homelessness.

Brooks Institute occupies multiple buildings on a 7.87 acre site on N. Ventura Avenue.  It’s out of town and not subject to “Not in my Backyard” protesters. The County of Ventura should take the lead role and, with the other cities and the many interested non-profit organizations,  pool their resources and acquire this multi-purpose property.  Similar to Casa Pacifica and its service to our county youth, the site would be dedicated to serve the many and diverse needs of our Homeless population.  The facility would set an example to the many other cities in southern California that are struggling to find a solution to their homeless problems.

It will take imagination, creativity, leadership, hard work, and financial resources to make this a reality.  If you are skeptical, look at what CSUCI did with a worn out mental hospital.

Chuck Engel


Interestingly enough you have positioned The Breeze to be the number one news source for real community news. You have done an extraordinary job in covering all the nonprofit events and chronicling daily life in Ventura.

You never say no to anyone with a feel good story, and to me that resonates, we need more good  news stories.

You’re the best !
Suz Montgomery

Suz: You do the same thing on your CAPSTV show, so maybe you are the best.

Not being funny doesn’t make you a bad person. Not having a sense of humor does
~ David Rakoff

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