I am so disgusted with our city council classifying the seniors as a burden to our community of Homer. I personally think that they all need to give us an apology for this statement. If they are disgusted with us, then it is time for them all to move out of Homer and move on with their lives. This point made — did any of us see an article written after the Dec. 7, 2015, council meeting passing Resolution 15-111 which requests the Alaska State Legislature to amend the statue in regards to property tax exemption for homes of seniors. Also, behind our backs, Rep. Paul Seaton has drafted HB 338 Municipal Property Tax Exempt which will give full control of each municipality to deal with property tax exemptions on the residence of a senior, a disabled veteran, and a widow or widower of a senior or disabled veteran and providing for an effective date.
As all of us seniors know we live on a fixed income and if we lose our property tax exemptions, $170,000 exempt value city and $350,000 exempt value Kenai Peninsula Borough, we will not be in good shape. We have had these exemptions for a long time and we are all grateful and appreciative of them, but when you have a city council that classifies us as a burden we must hold strong and not see this go by the wayside.
You can see that by giving control to the municipalities on our property tax exemptions, the various city councils will have control as they want and need the additional tax monies. As seniors, we all do our share of contributing to our community — so many volunteer with various organizations in town. I have volunteered at the SPH Auxiliary Gift Shop for many years as well as other seniors do and our sales go back to the hospital for many expensive products that save the hospital money.
It has been pointed out by the Alaska Commission on Aging that seniors in Alaska are the highest contributors ($2.4 billion) to Alaska’s economy so our contributions in whatever form need to be appreciated.
Lawmaker Lynn Gattis from Wasilla is another person that wants all seniors to move out of Alaska — it is her turn to move out of Alaska. When the resolutions and House bills come to council and legistative members, I want them to not consider us a burden or seniors to move out of state, but to remember we seniors are volunteers and financial contributors to our beautiful state of Alaska.