County of Maui is on ‘spend and tax’ binge

Much has changed on Maui since 2000, with one of the negatives being that planned spending by Maui County is set to break $787 million — more than double its FY 2000 budget, which was $392 million after adjusting for inflation and population growth.

That works out to a per-person average of $4,780 for beleaguered Maui residents, compared with $2,382 in fiscal 2000, but it’s doubtful they are getting any greater return on their investment.

For Maui County homeowners, this has translated into an average 26 percent increase in property taxes since fiscal 2000.

Maui residents should ask whether they are better off today because of the county’s extra taxation and spending. Maybe it should return to its fiscal 2000 spending and taxation levels and allow island families to keep more of their own money.

Joe Kent, Vice President of Research

Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Honolulu

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