Sen. Pat Jones wants to allow only two personal or dependent income tax deductions because "the more a family takes advantage of public education, the less a family pays" ("Senate panel OKs bill requiring big families to pay more for schools," Tribune, Feb. 10). Really?
Public education benefits everyone, not just families. Raising more than two successful children is hard work, providing huge public benefits.
First, replacement rate is 2.1 children. Some Utahns can’t, won’t or never have the opportunity to have two children. Some children are lost to disease or accident. We need some larger families just to replace ourselves.
Second, the public (including business and government) needs educated children. More kids publicly educated equals more public benefit. So every child from any size family benefits all of us. Third, each extra child delivers a host of extra taxes paid and economic benefits reaped by government, workers, and investors in many industries providing goods and services, like medical care, food, education, autos and recreation.
Large families provide extra workers (doctors, nurses, farmers, taxpayers, etc.), needed during old age by non-replacers. If fairness requires parents to pay extra up front, and they double or triple their successful working replacements, then fairness would demand we double or triple their retirement pay.
Be grateful for large families. Don’t hurt them.
Dale T. Ash
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