Regarding the June 8 op-ed page column by Len Tria, "Tyranny Genie Out of the Bottle," about IRS scrutiny of the tea party and other conservative groups, the only genie out of the bottle is from the bottle from which Tria was drinking.
What was the outcome of these IRS "investigations"? The groups were given their tax breaks and told they don't have to divulge from where the vast sums of money they are receiving are coming.
The real questions is why these groups should be getting tax exemptions. These are organizations that want to overthrow the government and drown it in a bathtub. Back in the 1950s they would have been at the top of Sen. Joe McCarthy's pinko-subversive list.
Now they want a free ride on the taxpayer's dollar.
New Port Richey
Lack of sense
My issue is with the Pasco County Property Appraiser's Office.
We moved here two years ago, anticipating this would be our "forever" home, but circumstances changed and our house is for sale. Since moving here our taxes have increased about $1,300. They tell me this is because of millage rate increases.
Our property value, however, has gone down, even though we've made improvements. They tell me it is because two houses in our area - one that was a foreclosure and one that the people walked away from because they were upside down - sold for very low amounts, which pulled down our value.
The two houses in question, however, have been purchased, improved and well represent the community. Why would comparing the price of a riverfront house to non-waterfront homes with specific issues make any sense, especially with the housing market's volatility the past few years?
If it were a "cookie-cutter" neighborhood of waterfront homes in which one house mirrors another, maybe. But in a mixed but still very nice neighborhood, other standards should be applied.
I yearn for some common sense in government rather than the madness of "that's the way we've always done it."
New Port Richey
Letters to the editor, June 19