Image: A tax appraisal which a Montgomery County citizen received over this past weekend.
Conroe, April 18 – Most Montgomery County citizens received their Notices of Appraised Value from our beloved Montgomery Central Appraisal District. The bill shown above is one which a fellow citizen of yours received on Saturday. For the purpose of discussion in this article and to protect the very innocent, we’ll refer to her a Penelope Plebeian.
Your eyes can’t really be deceiving you!
Penelope’s Notice of Appraised Value is quite an interesting notice. Calling this document a “Notice of Appraised Value” is a nice way of saying what it really is. With the “value” of her home, according the money-starved County government, rising from $29,990 to $74,970, what Penelope actually just received is affectionately referred to as a 250% (TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY PERCENT) TAX INCREASE!!!!!!!
You might ask what in the world is wrong with your eyes? Nothing, except that they don’t really want to see a 250% TAX INCREASE. You might ask what happened at Penelope’s property to cause its value to go up two-and-a-half times in one year. The answer: NOTHING.
What’s so sad about this tax increase is that the bad guys have leveled it against the poorer members of our community the most. The Golden Hammer has received numerous tips on the Tipline (832.496.4898 or firstname.lastname@example.org) that reveal that the Montgomery Central Appraisal District has targeted the least affluent properties this year for tax increases of this massive nature shown on the tax bill above.
You might ask who is to blame for this outrageous tax increase?
Five guys: Charlie Riley, Mike Meador, Ed Chance, Bruce Tough, and Tom Cox. Riley is a Precinct 2 County Commissioner. Meador is a Precinct 1 County Commissioner. Chance is a retired Precinct 3 County Commissioner. Tough is a former Chairman of the Woodlands Township Board. Cox is a homebuilder who is a buddy of Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal, Riley, Meador, and Tough.
Your eyes are deceiving you!
If you sat in the meeting of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court on Tuesday, April 11, 2017, from 9:30 a.m. until around 1 p.m., your eyes would have tricked you. Sitting in front of you would be five people: Craig Doyal, Charlie Riley, Mike Meador, Jim Clark, and James Noack. All five of them were elected in Republican primaries and then ran in general elections as Republicans. So wouldn’t you expect some conservatives and Republicans to dominate this Commissioners Court?
Don’t fool yourself. In actuality, your eyes are fooling you! The voting records of the Commissioners Court as a whole are hardly Republican nor are they conservative. Let’s examine three aspects of their record:
- Since 2000, the annual spending of the Montgomery County government has exploded by 428%, while the County’s population has grown only 84% during the same time period. County services haven’t expanded. In fact, they’ve gotten a bit worse than they were 17 years ago.
- In 2010, 93% of voters in the Montgomery County Republican Primary Election voted “FOR” a nonbonding referendum that set the ceiling of Montgomery County government spending increases at the rate of population growth plus the rate of inflation. Nevertheless, the Fiscal Year 2017 County Budget is $54 million MORE than the spending should be, if Doyal and his colleagues had kept to that expenditure ceiling.
- In 2017, the Montgomery County GOP Executive Committee voted overwhelmingly in favor of a resolution calling for substantial reductions in County government spending, an increase in law enforcement spending, and a 20% homestead exemption for property taxes. Doyal, Riley, and Meador have made clear they want spending increases for the coming Fiscal Year. Doyal and Riley first voted AGAINST a 20% homestead exemption on February 28, 2017. When Noack and Clark brought the homestead exemption back up again on March 28, 2017, Riley announced he was switching his vote and Doyal then reluctantly followed. Meador still voted against the tax relief for County taxpayers.
So please listen to the video streaming of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court meeting from April 11. But close your eyes when you do it. Here’s what you’ll hear:
- County Judge Craig Doyal and Commissioner Charlie Riley eagerly trying to justify any way he can spending $73 million on a 3.6 mile toll road that the Texas Department of Transportation has said they’d build anyway without Montgomery County spending a dime
- Commissioner Mike Meador voting for every single spending proposal
- Doyal, Riley, and Meador eagerly passing their entire “Consent Agenda” in one motion and approving more than $7.9 million of expenditures, employee benefit plan revisions they never reviewed, a resolution calling for spending more money on mental health hospitals without any discernment of how much they want to spend, hundreds of thousands of dollars of engineering contracts without any review, bidding, or consideration, and so much more.
Close your eyes and listen to Craig Doyal, Charlie Riley, and Mike Meador. You’ll think that you’re sitting in the Chicago City Council listening to “machine Democrats” voting in lockstep to spend money solely so that they can increase their political power. If you close your eyes and listen, without looking at them, you’ll think Doyal, Riley, and Meador were elected in the Democratic Primary.