Regarding the proposed Ranger College Annexation issue on the Nov. 7 ballot, Ann and I would like to make a few points about some of the things that some of the Annexation supporters have stated at one time or the other. We, like they, agree that education and trained work forces are very important and needed. We do not feel that anyone that is AGAINST ANNEXATION feels any different about those two issues and yes, they are very important.

Another statement that has been issued by the “FOR” group is that those of us against the annexation is so wrong: We very definitely have not missed the “real issue!” We totally understand the “real issue” is that annexation will cause a permanent tax increase for all property owners. THAT IS WHAT we are against! Mayor Stephen Haynes has stated he is also against the annexation because even though he has asked Ranger College how much of Brown County taxes will actually stay in Brown County, he has not received an answer. Wouldn’t you like to know as well?

Retired Mayor Bert Massey says that Ranger College has been good for our community. Who will argue with that fact? It has been good to us and we have been good to it! It is definitely an asset to Brown, Comanche and Erath Counties!

Mayor Massey points out the many accomplishments that Ranger College has made since “nearly being closed down in 2011 by The Texas Legislature.” I believe the majority of Brown County Citizens are proud of them for what they have done. He states that enrollment is up 20 percent this year and the college itself states that their nursing program has increased substantially over past years and that they already have 50 signed up for the January 2017 program.

As the chairman of the Brown County Ranger Advisory Board, Mayor Massey certainly has to be proud of their growth in such a short period of time. Mayor Massey’s ad states “from 2009 to present – 690 students to 2500.”

The amazing thing? They have done all of this without any taxes from the citizens of Brown County! The same is true in Comanche and Erath Counties. Why will Ranger College not expect to continue to expect, anticipate and work hard for that type of growth and accomplishments in the years to come without increasing our taxes? We see no reason that they won’t! Do you?

Ranger College itself has had several newspaper articles and ads telling how well they have done to date. For example, they state “It’s official that Ranger College is continuing its tradition of growth” (Bulletin 1-18-2017 page 2). Isn’t that great news — “Continuing its tradition of growth!” “Ranger saw an increase of nearly 11 percent from the fall of 2016.”

Wow! More good news about them. “In May nearly 40 high school students graduated with an Associate’s Degree or workforce certification.” Very nice!

Ranger quotes other growth statistics in other papers including their own Big Country Voter News Publications. With all of the growth that they are quoting at this point, wouldn’t that same growth be expected to continue in years to come? Why would they need an annexation and force taxes on Brown County to continue the tremendous success that they are seeing now without needing to tax anyone? They should not!

I have done my best to be fair, accurate and give some of the views of the those of us supporting the Brown County Citizens Against Ranger Tax Annexation. The last three Brownwood Bulletins have had half page multi-colored ads that have Ann and me concerned. We also wonder how Ranger College is affording the big ads in the newspapers; their own four-page newspaper publications and the outside agency that is running most of their campaign. That money they spent could have gone a long way in accomplishing what they claim to need the annexation for.

The “Ranger For” ads border on “wrong and unethical” where they are comparing apples and watermelons instead of apples and apples. Their big ads state “If it costs this much to pay for Kindergarten through High School, then we can surely pay this for a College Education.”

Come on now, there is absolutely no comparison between thirteen years in Public School and two years in a Junior College. There certainly is no comparison in the total cost of the two! Bold misstatement of facts? I sure think so!

My friend Kirk Wall said in his letter to the editor on Oct. 20, 2017: “Higher education has been and still is a person’s ‘choice’ to pursue. In Brown County, ‘choosing’ to financially support higher education has always been a person’s choice – not funded by property tax.” He makes an excellent point!

Like Kirk and many others, Ann and I voted Against Ranger College Annexation and urge you to do the same on Tuesday, Nov. 7! The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on that day. Exercise your right to vote and vote against the Ranger College annexation for the good of all of us in Brown, Comanche and Erath Counties!

Bob Beadel