What Do We Spend Our Tax Dollars On?

I received this email tonight from a frustrated Raleigh citizen. We receive email such as this regularly. I fully support spending more tax dollars and fees on actual services and infrastructure. Many of our read are a mess not only with potholes but also patches and roads that have not been resurfaced in decades. This leaves our streets and neighborhoods unsightly and diminishes home values and quality of life. I thank this citizen for a well written note that nails it.

Having received no response – not even from my district A representative – to my first email, I am writing again to protest the new yard waste collection policy. It was evidently passed in the dark of night without previous announcement to your constituents via local news outlets. None of my neighbors or friends in other neighborhoods had known of this policy when I told them of it. It is one more example of how our “representatives” continually reduce services while increasing taxes and fees. It is difficult to understand what you are spending our taxes on. The only projects I see are bike lanes painted on roads rarely travelled by cyclists and a rearrangement of Oberlin Rd. Our roads are riddled with potholes. Glenwood Avenue, a road travelled by many visiting Raleigh for the first time, is a disgrace, as are Lead Mine Rd., Old Lead Mine Rd., and to a lesser degree, Creedmoor Rd.

Apart from that, biweekly collection of yard waste in one bin the size of our garbage and recycling bins, is insufficient. We live on a small lot in a small subdivision. We have a modest lawn, an average number of shrubs and trees, and (in late spring, summer, and early fall) a small backyard vegetable garden. But we often (especially during gardening season) produce 200 to 250 gallons of yard waste, In fact, in late fall, when I uproot our vegetable garden and prune shrubs and small trees, we will produce that amount of refuse in two or three successive weeks.

I resent being required to buy probably two or three such bins I will need at most a half dozen times during summer and fall. One will do during winter and early spring. I have no place to keep two more out of sight.

I attached a photo of one recent week’s yard waste awaiting collection at our curb. As you can see, there are one 30 gallon and five (three overflowing) 40 gallon containers of yard waste.
Please reconsider this further reduction of quality of life in our city.
Thanks for your attention.