Letter: Senior citizens paying school taxes
There's another side to "Put limits on taxes for seniors" [Letters, Nov. 4].
I too am a senior paying high school-district taxes, even with the STAR exemption program and with my children long since out of school. However, I have grandchildren in other districts, and I want them to get good educations. I believe this applies to most seniors.
How do we maintain quality education in school districts if seniors don't pay? If people who have children in school had to make up that money, they would not move into that area. If that happened, the value of our homes would go down.
Most young people buy homes based on the quality of the school district. In addition, do we not have an obligation to the next generation?
Marilyn Getzoff, Long Beach
I concur, totally, with the letter writers who urge limits on school taxes for seniors. My parents, over their entire married life, paid the Herricks school district taxes, even while my sister and I attended 12 years of parochial school.
I returned to Williston Park in 1994 and have assumed that same tax responsibility. As a senior, I feel some consideration should be given now. We've paid our dues, and the Enhanced STAR, though helpful, is just a drop in the bucket. I live on Social Security income and a modest pension.
I have been an educator for 40 years. I think it's time that I, and others in the same age bracket, get a break!
Mary Kenney, Williston Park
These letters express a common thought among seniors on Long Island. I think we agree taxes are too high for everyone, and those on fixed incomes may have a more difficult time paying, but the logic of letting seniors pay less because they don't have kids in school is flawed.
Proponents of this idea fail to realize that our tax system is designed to spread the real cost of educating our children over our entire lifetimes and among the entire community. Both letter writers had children in school at one time, and when they did, their taxes were lower than they would have been because seniors in that day were paying part of the cost. Now that they're in their senior years, they want to change the system and shift the lion's share of the cost to someone else.
Michael Melgar, Glen Head