Friday, June 25, 2004

GR Losing Residents

Today the US Census Bureau released a report showing that the city of Grand Rapids is losing population. Surpised? Hardly. As we've reported earlier, the city of Grand Rapids now has the second-highest tax burden in the county. And what do we have to show for it? A nifty new convention center. Even as young people are moving downtown into the newly-renovated apartments and condos, the population continues to dip.

What does this mean? It makes for a depressed housing market (fewer homes are needed). So those of us who live in the city who are already hit with lower home values because of poor schools and high taxes, get squeezed even more.

What's the solution? There's still a lot of wasteful city government. Taxes should be reduced, both property and income tax, to attract businesses and homeowners. As people leave the city and property values decline, so does tax base growth, making the problem worse.

So, why should we stay in the city, again? Someone remind me.

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