News from Beacon Hill in recent weeks has noted numerous instances of fraud among those who receive taxpayer dollars in the form of welfare, and the efforts to address them.
Most notable was the move to stop handing cash payments to "the top 10 percent" of abusers.
Even that failed to pass.
State government should work in earnest at eliminating fraud in all areas. But instead we are again talking about raising taxes, which in "Taxachusetts" is surely the easier course.
But if the state's transportation system needs work, and it does, then find the money in the budget.
Transportation departments have budgets. Where is the money going if not to repair our deteriorating infrastructure?
The tax hike bill as proposed would hike taxes on gas, cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, utilities and more, plus reinstate a number of tolls on the Mass Turnpike.
The bill passed. Locally, all of our elected representatives voted for the new taxes except Republican Sheila Harrington.
It seems unconscionable to talk about more taxes when the money taxpayers already pay is not spent wisely.
In our local towns, proposed spending goes before committees comprised of taxpayers where the expenditures must be justified before recommended to voters. Like the federal budget, the state budget is getting too big for such oversight. But though there are processes in place to audit spending, they are apparently insufficient.
The waste pouring from the state's coffers will only get worse and it is incumbent upon those we elect to safeguard taxpayer interests.
But while allowing waste to continue benefits those reaping the reward, the taxpayers are surely the losers.