The proposal to tax certain nonprofits (with an assessed value over $500,000) at the prevailing property tax rate seems abusive. Many of these organizations may find it necessary to go out of business, or reduce their services significantly.

In the spirit of good citizenship, there are some nonprofits that currently volunteer donations to their town in lieu of taxes.

This is for the protection services they are afforded by the fire and police departments and the services needed from the waste collection and street maintenance. These nonprofits rarely use any services from the school department.

So, instead of being taxed at the current property tax rate, which includes paying for the schools, why couldn’t a public service fee be established for them by negotiations with their community? This responsible action would be doing their part and helping their community deal with the cost of having a nonprofit.

The law should be written so that the only mandate would be for the community governing body to establish an agreement with its nonprofits at whatever figure that is decided, whether it be $1 or many dollars.

In my opinion, the nonprofits should willingly accept paying a service fee as a citizen’s duty.

Thomas F. Shields

Auburn