Why should we pay?

John Dolley

How many UT students are paying property tax on real property in Travis County?

The UT 40 Acres is by and large a transient culture, not unlike “snow birds” who split up their time between latitudinal “nests” as the seasons change.

Austinites, however, particularly East Austin residents, have been subjected to alley shacks, gentrification and UT big money’s eastward expansionist pressures, and have struggled for many years under skyrocketing property taxes fueled by greedy Austin realtors flushed by a flush student renter’s market they have over a barrel. Irony isn’t the word for it — with this collusion between chamber, city, utility district and the Board of Regents’ top-heavy corporate composition, how could we expect anything else?

No wonder the local populace can’t leverage their own destiny with a vote, pitted against unlimited PAC funding and a captive student body swayed at the 11th hour by a Student Government meeting vote to endorse Proposition 1, led by its two top officers writing an editorial piece further directing an ivory tower lockstep robot mob’s duty to cast their very first vote. Any secret anteroom meetings to emphasize this?

In closing, I tend to agree with Don Zimmerman, treasurer of the Travis County Taxpayers Union. It sets a bad precedent to use taxpayer money for such a project; UT has the funds to pay for this themselves — sell some more West Texas land.

— John Dolley, Austin resident