Residents of Cape Coral voicing their opinion on the use of electricity taxes to pay charter school debt

Writer: Matthew Seaver
Published: Updated:

Electric bills are going up in Southwest Florida’s largest city to pay off charter school debt, but many Cape Coral residents are not happy about it.

Residents took to Facebook to comment their opinions for and against the utility tax going toward charter schools in Cape Coral.

WINK News’ story from Wednesday has more than 400 comments on Facebook.

Many people commented that they feel like they are being double-taxed. Others said the taxation supports schools, so it’s well worth the $2.25 tax added to their electric bills.

Sharon Janik took to Facebook in opposition writing, “because it does help with our property values. But I don’t think that I should be paying for everybody’s children to go to school.”

Paying out $2.25 a month could be more noticeable for certain people.

“They’re putting a burden on retired people to educate their children.”

Others, like Dye Scmidlin, commented, “Plenty of other schools here to attend than to force us to pay their debt when our kids don’t even attend there.”

Another commenter wrote: “It’s about the principle point and the double dipping going on. Don’t care if it’s 5 cents. It’s the principle point. Taxing my utility bill for school debt.. Not cool.”

Shawm Morton said he pays taxes for Lee County schools and now Cape Coral and doesn’t mind the double tax, commenting, “This is kids education…”

Eric Shellman, who doesn’t have any kids, agreed with the utility tax to support charter schools in Cape Coral. Shellman wrote, “If the kids can exit school and have a good grasp on reading, writing and math – with some us and world history stuck in there too, I’m all for it.”

Starting April 1, Lee County Electric Cooperative will begin applying the utility tax averaging $2.25 a month.

In total, the tax will cost Cape Coral residents an average of $27 a year.

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