Maine Librarian Speaks the Truth.

Like most US States these days, Maine is facing severe budget shortfalls.  On Wednesday Maine’s Appropriations Committee held public hearings regarding Governor Paul LePage’s proposed budget.  The 48th speaker of the day was award-winning part-time librarian, Kelley McDaniel.  Accompanying Ms McDaniel was her 11-year old daughter, excused from school to observe democracy in action.  It’s difficult for me to pull quotes from this testimony because every word of her three minute statement is spot-on.  Here’s a bit, but read the whole piece.  It’s worth your five minutes.

She told the committee that she recently won a national “I Love My Librarian” Award from the Carnegie Corp. and The New York Times — an honor that included a check, made out to McDaniel, for $5,000.

“I plan to report that money on my income tax and I expect to pay taxes on it,” she told the lawmakers. “Even though I donated the money in its entirety to the public middle school where I work.”

You heard that right.

She gave the whole five grand, after taxes, to her school. If you live in Portland, that’s your school, too.

It was only the beginning.

McDaniel said she’s “happy to pay those taxes” because the way she sees it, taxes are “like membership dues” for being a citizen of this great state.

She said that while she gets lots of things (education, health and safety, arts and recreation) in exchange for those “dues,” she realizes “I may not personally benefit from everything that tax money is used for.”





3 Responses to Yeah, what she said.

  1. BEZERKO says:

    Thanks for posting this Catherine.

    It’s what we have to do Mel. On radio, tv, print, and anywhere people meet, the idea that taxes are membership dues we pay as citizens because that’s what they are. Also they are investments into infrastructure that pay dividends to us all.

  2. MelGX says:

    I agree with the thought, but we won’t win many votes defending taxes. I wouldn’t mind paying them if I really thought the money was spent wisely. Unfortunately, for the most part, I don’t.

  3. Trevor Southerland says:

    That is awesome.