Friday, October 24, 2008

In for Two Dollars

I'd like to say that this was going to be good news. It isn't. I just found out, on the way home tonight, that my parking as a commuter in the great state of taxachusetts is going to be going up by 40% starting in less than a month.

MBTA Increases Already Exorbitant Parking Fees is the link to the web page where they shamelessly announce it. My curiousity gets the better of me though. Do they really think, in this economy, in this recession that it is a good time to charge even more for these services, the services that help people work and actually generate real tax revenue?

I'm not completely oblivious; Massachusetts and California were both in extremely dire straits and they needed to get short-term loans at high rates. Details are available at la times website. But in the end, it is not the increases that bother me so much as their size. People can absorb a small increase of a few percent. You adjust your budget, you make small lifestyle changes.

However, this change amounts to more than 600 dollars of net income for me per year. That is a 40% increase all at once. Almost no one can easily absorb that kind of change without giving something up. And for people on the lower end of the income scale, the change is even more acute.

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