Two Thousand Thirteen will mark the latest redistricting of Massachusetts Legislative districts. This is done every ten years as required by the constitution. Redistricting is based on the census and it determines the state legislative districts as well as our congressional representation in Washington D.C.
On January first, Massachusetts will be deprived of a congressional district due to a decrease in population, despite the fact that our public schools, universities, and hospitals are some of the best in the nation. We can only attribute such an exodus to frustration. People in general are frustrated with how hard it is to live and do business in Massachusetts. Business’ are over regulated and hampered with too many fees not to mention ever increasing taxes. The majority of citizens within Massachusetts either own or work for a small business. Many of them have gone under due to the savage economy and the burden thrown upon them by state regulations.
The primary contributor to this problem is the fact that the state legislatures is overwhelmed by tax and spend legislators (127 Democrats/ 33 Republicans). There is no room for debate. If the majority party decides they want to push a bill through debate is unnecessary because of the disproportion of numbers. There are many instances where the legislature has passed a bill that is burdensome to the taxpayer with a clear division down party lines. The new state healthcare bill that was passed several months ago that will deprive many people of healthcare because their ailments will be determined to cost too much. This will be regulated by the Attorney General’s office creating a new bureaucracy that will create many more jobs at the expense of sick people. This bill will also fine hospitals, clinics, and nursing homes for growing too much. Fines would be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Another party line vote that hurts you is the fifty plus million dollar bailout of the MBTA. This one time bailout was paid for by revenues derived from vehicle inspection stickers. This was a one-time fix. Next year the MBTA will undoubtedly need another bailout. Where will that money come from? Perhaps from the tax our democrat governor has been talking about on the miles you drive. A poorly managed entity is being bailed out by your inspection stickers. If there is that much money floating around from these revenues then I would suggest putting them into chapter 90 to fix our roads out west of 495.
On top of those issues sales tax has been raised to 6.25% from 5% making consumers shop out of state or online and hurting business here in Massachusetts. Income tax was voted by the people of the state to be lowered to 5%. The legislature refuses to lower it. Fuel taxes have gone up, meals taxes, and taxes on alcohol and cigarettes. Don’t be surprised to see the gas tax go up after the election. The tax and spenders are already discussing it. People are leaving the state and this creates a drop in revenue due to less people to tax. Rather than fix the problem the only way they see to raise revenue is to raise taxes and fees on those of us that are left.
Life in a small town is difficult. If services that the towns provide seem to be depreciating, that’s because they are. With the economy as bad as it is people are not making investments in new cars and upgrades to their homes causing a loss of revenue for the towns. Many people are just abandoning their houses and moving away, also causing a loss of revenue for towns. The state mandates many things for the town to provide or comply with. The state also provides local aid to cover these costs. However, five of the last six years, local aid has been cut amounting to over 40% while still mandates remain in effect. The towns cannot afford overrides because so many people are on the verge of losing their homes as it is. I for one would never advocate for a two and a half override.
Another issue the towns are forced to comply with that costs time and money are constantly changing ethics rules and regulations designed to keep a better eye on the municipalities. Many of these rules are burdensome, unnecessary, and prevent municipalities from doing business in a timely manner. At the same time the ethics rules of state legislature are virtually non-existent.
I am running for state representative for the fifth Worcester district because of these issues. My opponent, Anne Gobi, has voted for everything listed above. The healthcare bill, the tax increases, the local aid cuts, the MBTA bailout, all in the name of working for the district. The MBTA doesn’t come to Hardwick or New Braintree. Taxes are crushing the businesses and livelihoods of people here. Grants are nice but they are like band aides on a severed limb when the town can’t afford to do any infrastructure repairs without one. Ms. Gobi votes 98.7% of the time with the speaker of the house. She votes for Boston. As far as ethics goes, after the third democrat speaker of the house was indicted, she voted against ethics reform in the state house.
I will vote for you. I will vote for the district, not Boston. My family, friends, schools, and business have always been here. I will vote to protect those things. Job creation was listed as the most important issue after the last election two years ago. It never got brought up until early this year. I believe it is still the most important issue. Job creation is done by making it easier to work and live in Massachusetts. Creating jobs for the state is not beneficial. It is costly. Again, I will fight for and vote for your interests. On November 6th please consider voting for me as state representative for the 5th Worcester district. A vote for me is a vote for you.
Jason M. Petraitis
Candidate for State Representative
5th Worcester District