Saturday, February 15, 2020

Fred C Cox for Salt Lake County Council District 2

I believe we must stand up and be heard or watch our constitutionally protected rights disappear. We can't continue to let government take over our lives.

That was the reason I ran for office when my State Representative, Ron Bigelow, stepped down to help the Governor at the end of 2010, and it is still so today.

It was one of the reasons I was awarded the Libertas 2016 Defenders of Liberty Award.

The end of 2019 and the beginning on 2020, I was the original sponsor (of 5) for the Utah 2019 Tax Referendum. Working with voters throughout the state, both liberal, conservative, and everything in between, and as volunteers, we were able to gather over 170,000 signatures in 29 counties, exceeding the 116,000 required signatures in 15 counties. Because of the success of our team, the Legislature and the Governor repealed 2019 SB 2001, instead of facing the backlash of the voters this fall.

For 2015 and 2016, I was given a 100% rating from the Utah Taxpayers Association for voting against tax increases and looking out for the taxpayers. I also received a Salt Lake Chamber 2012, 2015 and 2016 Business Champion award for working to help Utah businesses grow. I worked hard to make sure the legislature didn’t ignore the idea of replacing the prison in Draper, which I believed would have saved over $100 Million, which has since been shown to be true.

I had the opportunity to serve in the Utah House of Representatives in 2011, 2012, 2015 and 2016. During that time I had a reputation of being willing to speak up and to fight for and vote for what I believed was right, no matter the opposition.

 I also had the reputation of reading though all of the bills I would vote on, and after the 2016 session a comedy song joked that I might have known other legislators' bills better than they did. During my service, I had one of the best floor attendance records of anyone in the House, with the exception of one rare House Judiciary Standing Committee meeting called during floor time where I missed 12 votes in 2015. They were the only ones I missed that year. I wanted to be in the chamber during debates and voting so I could hear both sides of an issue and see if a bill was ready, or needed to be amended or voted down. "Motion to Amend" was something I said more than once. I always voted for or against the bill no matter who the sponsor was or what party they belonged to.

I have been asked by many to run. I would appreciate your support, whether by endorsement for 2020 or campaign contribution.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Olympia Hills Project too fast or is the area ready

Olympia Hills Project: too fast or is the area ready?

IF the only choice is approving the current proposed zoning for all 900 plus acres and a very vague development agreement, the answer should be NO.

As an architect I have worked on projects that included mixed use, with densities from 25 units per acre to 64 units per acre,  plus commercial. Some of the masterplan concepts have been up to 80 to 100 acres. When I showed that the Draper Prison did not have to be moved, we were talking closer to 700 acres.

This Olympus Hills Project isn't just one or a few acres, it is over 900 acres. We are not talking less than 100 units, but over 6,000 units. The obvious question, is the area ready for this development? What can be done and what should not be done. As I have driven along Mountain View the last few years between West Valley City and Herriman the last few years, I have witnessed Growth and Traffic skyrocket.

IF the property owner or developer had purchased the land after the property was rezoned to be a P-C Zone or if there was already a signed development agreement with the county, the property owner would be vested and there would not be much anyone could do other than follow the development agreement with the County and the Owner or new owners.

That has not happened. Yet. That could change in 2 weeks. 

If you read the reports the county is posting at:

https://slco.org/development-services/olympia-hills/

It is clear from an infrastructure point of view, there is not currently enough sewer and traffic capacity to handle the project.

What can be approved?

1. The county could consider approving a master plan to allow much of the development over time. If it is going to be over 25 year vs the expected 12 years, it may still work.

2. The county could approve a smaller area, perhaps 5 to 10 to 20 acres to be rezoned at this time. Locating this smaller area near existing transportation hubs. The other areas could be rezoned as the infrastructure allows. One county council member favoring the development has stated “It is master-planned as a whole development. It is not going to be piecemealed.”

3. The county could further reduce the number of units. I was only able to hear one hour of public comments this last week, but it was clear the residents are not in favor of the amended proposal. The adjacent city Mayors are not either. While the county has added a lot more requirements to the new project, it is clear the public and adjacent cities are not convinced it is enough.

https://www.sltrib.com/news/2020/01/28/mayors-call-salt-lake/

What is clear is rezoning the entire property to a P-C Zone and signing a development agreement now for entire property ties the hands of future county or city councils by having the property owner vested.

IF the only choice is approving the current proposed zoning for all 900 plus acres and a very vague development agreement, the answer should be NO.


Sunday, January 26, 2020

Remember we had identified 5 major items in the bill that had people ticked

Remember we had identified 5 major items in the bill that had people ticked. Don't forget any. 

Major Problems with 2019 SB 2001:

First, if you raise the cost of vehicle fuel, by increasing the state fuel tax by 35%, a family driving around town has less money to go to the store to buy food. These added fuel costs will drive up the cost of goods at the register as well.

Second, raising the cost of food by raising the sales tax on food by a 177% Utah tax increase, means the family has less money to buy food. The State paying this family back later, doesn’t help. Why should a family making it without the government be pushed into requiring help?

Third, by reducing the amount of money going to public and secondary education by $680 Million, while promising public education will not be hurt, means they are either going to change the Utah Constitution or the legislature is going to make sure our property taxes go up, either directly such as 2015 SB 97 and 2018 HB 293 or indirectly by making the local school boards raise our property tax and those boards getting the blame.

Fourth, the bill sets up changing the funding of roads by removing the constitutional required funding from transportation related taxes, including transportation related sales tax, and replacing it with highway user fees and a road usage charge program.

Fifth, Adding to the increase of services with sales tax, which can drive service type businesses out of the state or at least out of business.

Also Remember we invited the left and right and everyone in between to unite to stop the bill, 2019 SB 2001. There was one initial rule, respect. We need this group to keep pressure on the legislature and governor so they don't create 2019 SB 2001 again, as a whole or in pieces. That is what United us and still does.

If any of these items come back in any form, they will be repealed by the voters. Food Tax, Fuel Tax, Education funding, Transportation funding, Services. No New Taxes. If they think this was just the food tax, they are wrong 

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Services listed in 2019 SB 2001


The following services would be included in the tax base:

Installation of tangible personal property when part of a taxable sale
Pet boarding, pet grooming,and pet daycare services
Personal transportation serviceIncludes all intrastate motor vehicle transportation services except for: services provided by governmental entities ambulance services transportation that is part of a funeral service low speed vehicles in a county of the first class Includes: peer to peer ridesharing (peer to peer carsharing is already subject to sales tax) scenic and sightseeing transportation in a motor vehicle
Motor vehicle towing
Parking lots and garages
Dating referral services
Identity theft protection
Streaming media
Shipping and handling when part of a taxable sale
Electronic security monitoring of real property

Remove certain existing sales tax exemptions to make the sales tax a broader consumption tax
The following exemptions would be repealed:

Electricity to ski resorts for lifts
Vehicles used for temporary sporting events
Admissions to college athletic events
Textbooks purchased by a student (not including a college bookstore; seller sales primarily textbooks)
Primarily unassisted cleaning of tangible personal propertyUnless payment is exclusively through machines that only accept cash or coin
Use of unassisted amusement deviceUnless payment is exclusively through machines that only accept cash or coin
Vending machine food sold for $1 or less under certain circumstancesUnless payment is exclusively through machines that only accept cash or coin
Certain car washesUnless payment is exclusively through machines that only accept cash or coin
Sales to a public transit district (includes construction materials converted to real property)
Fuel sold to a common carrier railroad and used in a locomotive engine
Newspapers or newspaper subscriptions
Address list or database used to send direct mail
Database access for viewing or retrieving information

Friday, January 17, 2020

UT 2019 Tax Referendum response to the Sutherland Institute

There is no Tax Hike in what we are doing. Signing a Referendum doesn’t create a new law, or new tax, or new anything. It just puts the bill on hold until the voters decide it’s fate in the fall.

Major Problems with 2019 SB 2001:
First, if you raise the cost of vehicle fuel, by increasing the state fuel tax by 35%, a family driving around town has less money to go to the store to buy food. These added fuel costs will drive up the cost of goods at the register as well. 

Second, raising the cost of food by raising the sales tax on food by a 177% Utah tax increase, means the family has less money to buy food. The State paying this family back later, doesn’t help. Why should a family making it without the government be pushed into requiring help? 

Third, by reducing the amount of money going to public and secondary education by $680 Million, while promising public education will not be hurt, means they are either going to change the Utah Constitution or the legislature is going to make sure our property taxes go up, either directly such as 2015 SB 97   and 2018 HB 293 or indirectly by making the local school boards raise our property tax and those boards getting the blame.  

Fourth, the bill sets up changing the funding of roads by removing the constitutional required funding from transportation related taxes, including sales tax, and replacing it with highway user fees and a road usage charge program. 

Fifth, Adding to the increase of services with sales tax, which can drive service type businesses out of the state.
Not only is raising taxes on food wrong, raising fuel prices bad, taking money from education questionable, the whole idea of moving all sales tax money away from roads, as stated above is wrong.

So why do they think we are distorting what the new tax bill says? 

What are we saying? 

We are telling people to read the bill, from the legislature’s website, read the legislature’s own summary/explanation of the bill and the official fiscal note of the bill.  

For some light reading, don’t miss the $1/2 Billion Higher Education Funding Shell Game found in the bill, Starting at lines 6579. 

I really don’t want to see Part 2 and Part 3 of this Tax Reformation. Let’s Stop the madness Now!!  Sign the Referendum.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

The Utah Taxpayers Association, have they read the Utah Constitution regarding 2019 SB 2001


The Utah Taxpayers Association is wondering if we have read the bill, 2019 SB 2001

I wonder if they have read the Utah Constitution. 

First, they are saying the income tax reduction (reducing the Education Fund) can start helping employees in January when the earliest anything in the bill can take effect is in February. 60 days from December 12, 2019. They didn't get the 2/3 vote of both houses. If they are telling businesses to start changing the income tax withholding rates prior to the 60 day effective date, they don't understand Utah Article VI, Section 25. (The Utah Tax Commission is waiting. They understand).

Article VI, Section 25.  [Publication of acts -- Effective dates of acts.]
 All acts shall be officially published, and no act shall take effect until sixty days after the adjournment of the session at which it passed, unless the Legislature by a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, shall otherwise direct.

Second, the $600 Million sales taxes the Utah Taxpayers Association are complaining about going to roads is supposed to go to roads. Transportation related (sales) taxes are to go to roads by the same part of the constitution as the income tax is to go to education. 

Article XIII, Section 5.  [Use and amount of taxes and expenditures.]
(5) All revenue from taxes on intangible property or from a tax on income shall be used to support the systems of public education and higher education as defined in Article X, Section 2.
(6) Proceeds from fees, taxes, and other charges related to the operation of motor vehicles on public highways and proceeds from an excise tax on liquid motor fuel used to propel those motor vehicles shall be used for:


Ultimately they are missing the obvious

First, if you raise the cost of vehicle fuel, by increasing the state fuel tax by 35%, a family driving around town has less money to go to the store to buy food. These added fuel costs will drive up the cost of goods at the register as well. 

Second, raising the cost of food by raising the sales tax on food by a 177% Utah tax increase, means the family has less money to buy food. The State paying this family back later, doesn’t help. Why should a family making it without the government be pushed into requiring help? 

Third, by reducing the amount of money going to public and secondary education, while promising public education will not be hurt, means they are either going to change the Utah Constitution or the legislature is going to make sure our property taxes go up, either directly such as 2015 SB 97   and 2018 HB 293 or indirectly by making the local school boards raise our property tax and those boards getting the blame.  

Fourth, the bill sets up changing the funding of roads by removing the constitutional required funding from transportation related taxes, including sales tax, and replacing it with highway user fees and a road usage charge program. 

Fifth, Adding to the increase of services with sales tax, which can drive service type businesses out of the state.

Not only is raising taxes on food wrong, raising fuel prices bad, taking money from education questionable, the whole idea of moving all sales tax money away from roads, as stated above is wrong.


Tax Hike? As an Eagle Scout, I know something about Hiking. Perhaps the representative of the Utah Taxpayers Association needs to get out more. There is no Tax Hike in what we are doing. Signing a Referendum doesn't create a new law, or new tax, or new anything. It just puts the bill on hold until the voters decide it's fate in the fall.

So why do they think we are distorting what the new tax bill says? 

What are we saying? 

We are telling people to read the bill, from the legislature's website, read the legislature's own summary/explanation of the bill and the official fiscal note of the bill. For some light reading, don't miss the $1/2 Billion Higher Education Funding Shell Game found in the bill, Starting at lines 6579.

I really don't want to see Part 2 and Part 3 of this Tax Reformation. Let's Stop the madness Now!! 

Sign our Referendum:
 
See our website: http://ut2019taxreferendum.com/