The list of victims keeps growing. Seniors will pay more for prescriptions. Homeowners will lose rebates. Teachers and policemen will lose their jobs. The sacrifices will be shared by everyone. Or will they?
As Editorial Boards cheer the financial carnage you’ll notice that they never mention themselves. The State’s largest newspapers are the recipients of millions of dollars of taxpayer money. State law requires that local governments buy legal ads in newspapers to post notices of purchases, sales, and meetings.
No business would choose to publish these legal notices in tiny print in some local newspaper. The same notices can be placed on web sites for free. The web ads would save millions in advertising costs but also bring other benefits. Placing these notices on web sites would allow people to use search engines to find information or opportunity. A local government selling a piece of land might find more buyers. A county purchasing department seeking highway equipment might get more bidders.
No one can justify spending millions in property taxes to subsidize millionaire publishers while people lose their homes and children are pressed into larger classrooms. It’s time for the Legislature to free local governments from this wasteful state mandate.