According to Forbes, Rhode Island ranks 43rd in the nation in business climate. It is the reason why we are always one of the first states into recession and one of the last states out of recession. In many cases local and state governments are outright hostile to business.
Here in Westerly, we have always been pretty good at listening to our business community and have always been respectful of the business community. This is why I am dismayed the council would even consider the proposed 10% non-use tax on business properties.
This proposed tax is a blatant assault on the business community. It basically says that if you do not develop your property and create jobs that the government is going to take the property away from you through aggressive taxation.
Business owners already pay taxes on these properties and when it is economically feasable, these properties will be developed. It is a tyrannical tax and the council should reject it.
The writer is a former Westerly town councilor.