To the Herald-Whig:
The city of Quincy has a problem. That is, how to fund pensions for police and firefighters. Mandates from Springfield call for communities like Quincy to have their pension fund at the 90% mark by 2041. And while a number of cities in Illinois have instituted a 2% food and beverage tax similar to the one currently on the table at City Hall, one has to wonder why those in the local food and beverage industry are being singled out.
There are approximately 120 on-premise accounts in the city of Quincy, not including places that do not have a liquor license. Of those, 95% are locally owned and operated small businesses that employ local people, pay local property tax, local sales tax and are regulated by the state. These are the same businesses that support and host a countless number of benefits that help to make Quincy a great place to live.
Ethan Colbert's article in the April 24th edition of The Herald-Whig made a good run at putting lipstick on the 2% tax proposal, but the article was both one-sided and misleading. Mr. Colbert took the time to get comments from a number of Quincy residents in favor of the tax. However, none of the citizens he interviewed are, to my knowledge, in the local food and beverage insustry.
While adding 2% to your next meal ticket might not seem like that big of a deal, it could be enough to turn that "dines out three times a week" person into a "dines out twice a week" consumer. And that's how it starts.
The pension/tax issue is one that should be shared by all citizens living inside the Quincy city limits, not just those who serve food and liquor.