How quickly the days fly by — we’ve turned another page on the calendar and it’s already November. It seems like we were just talking about summer activities and garden projects, and now conversation has turned to Thanksgiving and Christmas plans.

Tax statements arrived in last week’s mail, and while our market value increased, our taxes were less than last year. Even though that was a good thing, many of us can’t resist the temptation to grouse about and complain about taxes, and wonder if we indeed are getting our money’s worth. This year, I read just where all the money goes, and I must admit — we are getting our money’s worth.

Tax funds support Central School District, Chemeketa Community College and Willamette Educational Service District, and provide good and positive education experiences to everyone in MI Town and surrounding areas. When I see the children waiting at the bus stop every morning, I know that I’m helping them to learn what they need to know to become successful adults. Students of all ages who are continuing with their education or returning to school to follow new career paths also benefit from contributions to Chemeketa, and Willamette ESD helps students with special needs.

Polk County provides government services for approximately $300 per year; our Polk County Fire District No. 1 gives us fire and medical help almost instantly for about the same amount. We would be between a rock and a hard place without these public servants who are always there for us.

Library services are worth their weight in gold and cost just pennies. MI Town’s cities run smoothly and provide us with good government, clean streets and safe sidewalks for less than $700 per year. The very small amount we pay for the new 4-H and Master Gardener programs is comparable to a nice lunch out, and provides so many benefits to everyone. After taking the time to really think about where our tax money goes and all the good things it pays for, I’m not so grumpy after all.

All community members were invited to meet-and-greet the four finalists for the Monmouth senior center director position last week. Candidates were all very easy to communicate with and shared their individual ideas during the afternoon.

The community breakfast is scheduled for this Saturday at the Monmouth Senior Center, where your entire family can enjoy all-you-can-eat pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage, biscuits and gravy at a reasonable cost ($6 for adults, $3 for children younger than 12).

It’s Homecoming at Western Oregon University, and the Wolves meet Azusa Pacific at 1 p.m. Saturday. Please check the WOU website for more information about all the activities.

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