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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Friday, January 04, 2008

MICHIGAN TAXPAYERS, LET ME HEAR YOU SAY DUH

It was reported yesterday that the 2006-07 state budget year that just ended September 30, 2007 actually came out with a $353 million surplus, $94 million came from the School Aid Fund and the other $259.1 million was in the General Fund. It was reported that this surplus will allow the 07-08 budget to continue without future budget changes and updates throughout the year.

Today House Minority Leader Craig Deroche accused the Democrats of purposly not reporting the surplus until after tax increases were in place. "This is a fleecing of Michigan taxpayers," Mr. DeRoche said. "I find it interesting that the surplus remained a secret until after the tax increases took place. Democrats said Michigan was broke and the only fix was a tax increase. However, they obviously knew otherwise." He is asking for hearings to review the matter.

I'm hoping this will put a stop to the large fee increases being requested by the Department of Environmental Quality. However, legislation that keeps the current fees in place for the next 3 years will probably remain. (This part was added by Christina Lawrence who is on the board of the State Campground Association that Dan and I belong to. What she is referring to is the $1500 annual fee that Dan and I pay to the State for having a sewage lagoon. The plan was THIS year to raise it to $2000 annually. For those of you who haven't read the previous stories about this fee, in a nutshell, WE are being charged the same amount that a business that is open YEAR ROUND is charged and at the rate of dumping 9,999 gallons PER DAY into the sewage lagoon. IF we were 100% occupied, we could only POSSIBLY dump 4750 gallons per day and that is only from May 15th to November 30th. That is just for the campground. Our lodging is on its own septic system. We have been fighting this for 4 years. We have NO idea WHAT this fee is for, what it actually does. It is a RARE occasion that the DEQ even inspects the lagoon...and that only takes about 15 minutes.

Anyway, yes, we've all been fleeced royally, eh?)

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