FALL 1998 Newsletter
Below is the first page of our four-page Fall 1998 Newsletter sent to all
2000+ Woodstock homeowners. Briefly, it gives an update on the long
overdue property tax reassessment, and exposes the (in my opinion only -
I must say this, as I have been threatened with libel suits for my
reporting on town governments activities before) waste and corruption in
governments' attempts to deny economic fairness and freedom to their
P O Box 10090
Woodstock, NY 12498
Dear Mr. Spelvin,
Good news and not so good news: First, the good news.
The all new 1998 tax assessments are, on average, far more fair than they were.
I base this on reviewing many of them for homeowners who called to ask my opinion after they received their new assessments. Also, a majority of our property tax clients, whose taxes were far too high, received substantial reductions. (Some cut by more than half). The Woodstock Grievance Board this year, after 12 years of (in my opinion) ignoring fairness completely, changed their practice and granted a majority of our clients fair assessments.
Before you read the "bad news," let me say I believe that we can and we should take action, when we can, to correct abuses of government. We ignore them at our peril. The price of freedom is eternal vigilance. If our economic freedom is basic to all our freedoms (as Milton Friedman suggests in his classic, Free to Choose), then reining in the government's arrogant and illegal behavior in arbitrary and unfair assessment practices is essential to stop the erosion of our freedoms and the corruption of our government.
The bad news: The town of Woodstock has, and is continuing to spend tens of thousands of dollars on lawyers with the sole purpose of delaying and obstructing the implementation of fair tax assessments. This has gone on since 1986 and continues today. This is your money being spent. Fortunately, its expenditures have met with complete failure -- they have not stopped us from winning fairness in each and every tax case that has been resolved, so at least it's not "worse than useless" - it's only wasteful and useless.
You can help: Complain. Demand an explanation. Vote. Throw the bums out.
I enclose for your information an arrogant and insulting letter received from the grievance board and my scathing reply. Immediately after this exchange they, for the first time in history, granted my clients fair assessments. Is this causation, or only correlation?
I can't say for certain, but I applaud the result.
Andrew Peck, Owner and Principal Broker
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