Carrol Daily Times Herald from Carroll, Iowa on July 3, 1974 · Page 11
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Carrol Daily Times Herald from Carroll, Iowa · Page 11

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Carroll, Iowa
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Wednesday, July 3, 1974
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Page 11
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More Power to People? Congress Fussing About Revenue-Sharing NEA-London Economist NWU.-C c«r..I™ .. ij i _ . - ^— ^ —By NBA-London Economist News Service WASHINGTON - (LENS) — Before the Watergate scandals monopolized all attention, the Administration was blowing the trumpet for its "new federalism". In language reminiscent of Gov. George Wallace, President Nixon was bashing the faceless bureaucrats of Washington and promising to return "power to the people". The foundation of this operation is general revenue sharing; Mr. Nixon, with an historical flourish, took himself off to Independence Hall in Philadelphia in October, 1972, to sign the state and local fiscal assistance act, which parcels out to states and local government $30 billion in federal revenue over five years with few or no strings attached. It was welcomed by all local officials, but there were, nevertheless, some forebodings that this money would be used to keep taxes down, pay for police and fire services, build golf courses, swimming pools and the like, and that little would find its way to social services for the poor. Some critics even saw it simply as a reward for the rich, white suburbs that did Mr. Nixon proud at the polls in November, 1972. Have these fears been realized? Sen. Edmund Muskie (D-Me.), long a supporter of general revenue sharing in principle, has recently been using his subcommittee on intergovernmental relations to take the first detailed look at the way the program has worked. So far nearly $13 billion has been disbursed, although very much less than this has actually been spent. The recipients have two years to decide what to do with the money. The major conclusion was DONT WAIT FOR A HE AT WAVE! 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The vast majority of the 38,000 states. cities, counties, Eskimo villages and Indian tribes have used their federal funds to keep local taxes down, or keep them from going higher than would otherwise be possible, or to cut taxes. To many this seems a misuse of federal money, given the present prosperity of the states. The idea of revenue sharing was first put forward by Democratic economists in the 1960s, at a time when the federal government had a budget surplus and the states were strapped for cash. Now the tables are turned; in the last fiscal year all but two states were in the black — some, like California, very comfortably so. But the cities are still in bad shape, and the states owe their present surpluses to the constant increase of local taxes. Many of these, like sales and property taxes, hit the poorest hardest. An original aim of the framers of revenue sharing was to use federal revenues, derived mainly from taxes on personal and corporate incomes, to reduce the need for regressive state and .local taxation. Senator Muskie, for one, rates this a proper use of revenue-sharing money. Nuclear Control is the Issue —By NEA-Lnndon Economist News Service Economist Commentary A team of American officials has been in Moscow trying to shape up a draft treaty, intended to be signed by President Nixon and Chairman Brezhnev during their talks, which would extend the 1963 nuclear test ban treaty to underground tests, or at least to the bigger of these. On June 14 Brezhnev gave the first public indication of his readiness for some such agreement. There are even some lingering hopes that the Moscow talks may yield an agreement to put permanent limits on the size of Russia's and i America's missile armories, although the prospects of any such deal arouse a great deal of scepticism. There is still plenty of controversy about the merits of the SALT-1 agreements that emerged at the two superpowers' summit meeting in Moscow in 1972, and some of that controversy will be revived if Nixon and Brezhnev now go only so far as to extend Times Herald, Carroll, la. Wednesday, July 3, 1974 11 Mayor Kenneth Gibson of Newark told the subcommittee that he had used all his revenue- sharing money to cut his city's property taxes and he was proud of having done so. It is the most effective way, he says, to revitalize his city's appallingly depressed center, Apart from taking the place of tax money raised locally, the highest proportion of the federal funds, 24 per cent, is being used for education, 23 per cent for public safety (police and fire protection), 15 per cent for public transport and only about 3 per cent for social services. A lot of money is going into capital outlays, "bricks and mortar" projects, because local officials say that they are worried about the permanence of the scheme and therefore do not want to count on revenue sharing to meet recurring expenses. Critics claim that this bias diverts money from social services. The social services are not gaining from funds devoted to operating expenses either; 58 per cent of these go for public safety. All these official figures should be taken with several grains of salt. For example, revenue-sharing money can be used to pay police salaries which then frees police money for other uses and the General Accounting Office admits that there is no way of checking up on those other uses. Nor is there any means of checking whether that "freed" money complies with federal anti-discrimination and civil rights laws. The Muskie sub-committee is pondering the need for further restrictions. Yet any more controls would probably destroy the freedom of action which is the philosophic justification for revenue sharing. That general revenue sharing is still widely popular was clear at the recent national governors conference in Seattle. Although Gov. Milton Shapp of Pennsylvania called it "the biggest public relations sham perpetrated in recent years", more governors agreed with Gov. Daniel Evans of Washington that states preferred to be "unfettered with restrictions so niggling as to constantly invite harassment from federal functionaries." But Rep. John Brademas of Indiana, a Democratic whip and a strong supporter of social service programs, warned the governors that, if the November elections put a larger number of Democrats in Congress, revenue sharing could come under heavy fire next year. Many Democrats are already incensed about the paucity of general revenue-sharing money reaching the aged, infirm and handicapped, they have taken some of their frustration out on Mr. Nixon's plans for special revenue-sharing programs in education, community development and transport which are all stuck in Congress. Members of Congress of both parties are dead set against a proposal by the governors that general revenue sharing be financed by a fixed percentage of the federal income tax, so making its funding semi-automatic. Congress feels it has surrendered quite enough power to state and local governments already and is not disposed to let go of the purse strings entirely. (ci The Economist of London BRENNY S MARKET CLOSED THURSDAY, JULY 4 WEST 3rd STREET - PRICES GOOD THRU TUESDAY, JULY 9 U.S.D.A. CHOICE Cook-Out STEAK 79 m Mib U.S.D.A. Choice Blade Cut -. ^ Beef Roast lb O9* Freih * _ QQ Ground Beef 3-u». * I Sliced Large _ -^ Bologna Lb O9* Wilson Savory £ _ Franks 2 Lb . Plla . * | Freth the five- year term of the 1972 interim agreements for two or three years beyond 1977. But fears persist about the possibility that Mr. Nixon's need to save his political skin may lead him to go a lot further. True, those fears may have been lessened by Henry Kissinger's achievement in getting Israel and Syria to disengage on the Golan front. A quietened Middle East should impress American public opinion much more than a new installment of the detente with the communist powers that has become almost a routine item in the Nixon-Kissinger diplomatic act. But Mr. Nixon still needs to depict a visit to Russia as something more positive than a quasi-napoleonic retreat to Moscow from a blazing Washington. An extension of the 1963 t e s t b a n t o underground explosions would be no mere gesture — the two superpowers have staged just about as many nuclear tests underground since 1963 as they had staged above ground before that year's treaty — but expert opinion is now almost unanimous in regarding such an extension as primarily a cosmetic. If the Moscow talks do produce anything more PAINT SALE EFFECTIVE 7 DAYS EXTERIOR AND INTERIOR LATEX GUARANTEE Thii point ii guaran- r>*d recover any rotor painted lurface with On* coal ( * * c e pi rough wood ihinglei, ihaktt and ilucco) when applied according to label direction* at a rate not fo ex- Ctcd 400 iq. ft. per gallon. If Ihit paint foil* to cover at stated here, bring the label of thii point lo your ntareit Ward* branch and we wid furnith enough paint to insute coverage or, at your option, will refund the complete purchaie price. 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WARDS HAS ALL PAINT IN STOCK THE WAY TO SHOP THIS SEASON IS WITH YOUR CHARG-ALL CARD AT WARDS ambitious on strategic arms limitation it is liable to provoke criticisms from several different quarters. Sen. Henry Jackson, with his •eyes on a Democratic presidential nomination in 1976 and his thumb still firmly turned down on the 1972 SALT-1 deal, has been sounding loud warnings against the idea of a new SALT agreement primarily meant only to meet a "politically expedient, self-imposed June deadline". Such a quick-fix deal, according to the formidable senator, would reduce the chances of making a really worthwhile SALT-2 treaty. ici The Economist of London Peaches lb 39* Santa Rosa ^^ ^^. Plums IB 39< b'r'pepper ""e^ 79< $]99 $]79 Old Milwaukee Beer Schmidt Beer .12 Pak 12 Pak CUT-UP FRYERS 42 c Lb. Morrell Defatted Ham Portions u,. Farmland Canned Ham 3-u, Tin Farmland Sliced Bacon a,. Loin f^ f^± Pork Roast lb 09* ..10-lbi. 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