Of course, not everything that we encountered was on the funny side. As usual, we came across a number of things which we immediately put in the food-for-thought classification. For example we are puzzled about an item in “Village Voices,” the village of Cooperstown newsletter that is sent out with the quarterly water bills.
In an article titled “Changes Threaten Economic Stability” it is noted that the population of the village has fallen 15 percent from 2,180 in 1990 to 1,852 in 2010. It is also pointed out that the population in 1950 was 2,650, a fact which surprises us not at all as in 1950 there were four people living at 105 Pioneer St. while now there is but one. Therefore, the suggestions are being made by the Village’s Economic Sustainability Committee for ways in which to return the year-round population to “... about 2,500 people, thus broadening our tax base and reversing a trend that threatens our future.”
We find this to be confusing. Even if we could increase the size of our family to four, we do not think it would result in an increase in the amount of taxes we would pay the village. As far as we know, property taxes are based on the property and buildings thereon, not the population actually living on the property.
Mention is also made that there are many properties in the village, as shown by the number of residences that shut their water off in the winter that are seasonal. Yet we suspect all those people pay property taxes for the entire year, not just for the part they might actually be in residence. Thus we do not understand how having more residences transition from part time to full time use would increase the amount of property tax revenue received by the village. We find it all to be rather bemusing.