2017-03-16 / Letters to the Editor

All property owners should be taxed for lake

On March 9, I received a letter concerning improvement to Houghton Lake at the mere price of $164 for five years. However, the fee is only applied to lakefront property. I would not stand against any process that would upgrade the natural beauty of Michigan’s largest inland lake.

The matter in which taxes to fund this “pipe dream” comes only from the citizens who are fortunate enough to live on the lake are asked to pay the entire bill. This is an outrage to civilized behavior and insults common sense and the American way.

I would like to point out lakefront residences are already taxed at a higher rate which discriminates against lakefront owners who are already overtaxed.

Here is my beef, the Houghton Lake Improvement Board benefits all residents regardless of where they reside. Tax all property owners, that is fair. This is an example of local government gone amok and not being fair and equal.

As a retired U.S. Marine I am proud to pay my taxes. However, I could be just as proud for half the amount.

Semper Fi.

Larry Kepler

Houghton Lake

Editor’s note: The HLIB assessment is not only levied on lakefront property, it is also levied on commercial properties around the lake as well as some non-lakefront residences. Lakefront property owners pay one full unit while the non-lakefront residences that are assessed pay a half unit. Businesses are assessed according to size with a minimum of one unit. The HLIB will hold a public hearing on its five-year plan March 28 at 7 p.m. at the Markey Township Hall. The HLIB recently voted to keep its maximum assessment at $164 per unit. However, the HLIB has not charged the maximum assessment since the first years of the 15-year project to control invasive plant species in the lake. The most recent assessment was $110 per unit.

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