Don’t Fall For “FREE”

I cringe when government advertises something as “FREE”. Nothing is free. A City of Boca Raton resident pays tax at every level: real estate, sales, water, sewer, trash, electricity, phone, dog park, beach, boat ramp, street parking, building permit and so on. Anything government refers to as “FREE” is being paid for by you and me.

Even if you rent your home, you still pay real estate taxes that go to the city. Your landlord builds them into your rent.

If you rent commercial space you are paying real estate taxes, either as part of your gross rent or in your common area maintenance (CAM). Commercial tenants pay sales tax on rent. Essentially, these tenants pay tax on a tax! Ultimately, the tax commercial tenants pay shows up as a hidden tax in what they charge their clients and customers.

I could drone on about taxes, but I’ll cut to the chase: We all pay a wide variety of local taxes and we all have a stake in how those taxes are spent. You may not know where to start in sorting out who in government spends our money. Make a point of attending government meetings – boards, councils, commissions and committees. That’s where elected and appointed officials decide where to spend our money.

Don’t fall for “FREE”. It simply is not so.

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