A strong sense of community makes small towns thrive.
Building and maintaining that community, unfortunately, comes at a cost when residential and retail growth passes by. Thatís why Berthoud residents must decide two important tax issues during this election cycle.
One tax would add 3 mills to property taxes to hire police officers and a code enforcement officer, purchase police cars and make other public safety improvements.
The other would add 1.9 mills to the property tax rate to help fund the library.
Both would last a maximum of 10 years, which gives the town time to try to develop and/or grow into a stronger retail tax base.
These two deserve a vote of confidence.
Feeling safe is an integral part of a good community feeling.
The town needs to look ahead as it may grow and the surrounding areas grow, and thatís what this tax is about.
It would fund some catch-up. And it looks forward toward building a better community through programs such as working with youth.
The Berthoud Police Department has relied on hand-me-down police vehicles from neighboring city police and donations from good-hearted citizens to keep up.
The department has done well. But nothing is worse than a community trying to improve residentsí sense of safety once itís lost.
The town feels safe, but it needs the dollars to continue being a safe place to live.
Libraries also build community. Even as society changes, they grow our youth through reading and act as a gathering place for all generations to learn, communicate and expand themselves.
Again, thatís what community is about ó coming together.
The public safety tax equals $47.76 a year on a $200,000 house. The library tax would add $30 a year on that same house.
But by voting yes, it shows that citizens are committed to a better community now and for the future.