Watchtower Strains Local Town Budgets
- Very interesting story. Thank you for posting this. Keep us updated on the progress. Even if you accept the premise that churches should be tax exempt - this does not mean that the complete supply chain used to service the church should be tax exempt.
Perhaps the most even-handed, thoughtful consideration of the topic I have ever read. It is not as clear-cut as some articles have claimed.
I did not know the extent to which the organization has donated such amenities as the town's sports fields and municipal buildings, including their upkeep. But I do see the concerns of the town's fathers who are worried about the falling tax revenue.
There are good reasons why religious organizations received tax exemptions from the federal and state governments, said Zaino. They generally contribute to the local community by providing a place of worship and by serving the homeless.
But...who are the 'homeless' that the Watchtower are 'serving'? Are the homeless all those worker drones that get free housing and food inside the WTS compound? Because, the Watchtower certainly doesn't serve homeless people unless they are wearing a blue badge.
And that is another thing. Do the Watchtower workers have to declare their food and housing as 'taxable income'? I worked on a crew once that supplied food at lunch time. I had to pay tax on what the food was worth.
- This is fascinating on too many fronts to talk about immediately. Marking for further thought.
- I would have to say the amount of community service Wat does not come close to the value of property and school tax they don't pay. And to add to that, other individuals, businesses, groups contribute to the community in various ways AND pay their taxes. That falls into the category of being a good neighbor. Wat spends money locally if it is the best way for them to accomplish their goals, not because they feel they should put money into the local economy. They do community work to stay on the "good" side of town officials because they constantly have to appear in front of and deal with these officials for variances, permits, inspections...... It's all about Watchtower, that's it.
This was interesting in the article:
Shawangunk Supervisor John Valk said Jehovah’s Witnesses helped the town by building a football field at Galeville Park, a softball field, and two soccer fields. They also did about $100,000 worth of work on the rail trail.
From time to time I hear GB members rail against football.
That is just aform of bribery to get what they want.
Who would have thought:
"Shawangunk Supervisor John Valk said Jehovah’s Witnesses helped the town ... wash the new building’s windows."
- Another way of seeing it-----Wat sends their FREE labor to do a community job. Big <>?":+_ deal. Then Wat get a Thank You for doing it with a mention in the weekly Shawagunk Valley News and the guys that did the work for NOTHING aren't mentioned.