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The taxes are too darn high

Today’s Sound Off is about homes that are being heavily taxed:

Dear Heloise: A neighbor three doors down from me is moving out of his house because the property taxes have risen to a level where many residents in my town cannot afford to live in their homes!

I realize that the city needs property taxes to function, but if we keep raising property taxes to such a level that no one can afford them, we’ll end up like Detroit, with hundreds of empty houses and no revenue from those places. Then, let’s see how a city runs on a reduced income from property taxes.

The majority of people being taxed to death are the elderly who have lived in their homes for years and have nowhere to go. What happens to them? Will they become the next group of homeless people living on the streets?

Since so many retired people live on a fixed income, it seems only fair that either their taxes should be frozen at the time they retire or their taxes be greatly reduced. No one is getting rich on social security, and taxing the elderly out of their homes is cruel. They have done all they could for this country, so let’s not throw them out on the streets. — Ruby J., Southfield, Michigan

Ruby, thank you for your letter. I’d love to hear from my readers on what they have to say about this growing problem of property taxes and the effects it’s having on them. — Heloise

FAST FACTS

Going on vacation and taking your medications with you? Remember:

— Make a list of all the medications you are taking with you, including the dosage for each.

— Bring enough for the trip and for a couple of extra days.

— If you’re flying, pack all medications in your carry-on bag or purse.

— Keep all medications in their original packaging.

BRUSHING HAIR

Dear Heloise: I’ve been a hair dresser for nearly 12 years, and I can tell you, most people don’t need to wash their hair every day. Maybe every other day, or every third day, to keep the ends from drying out and avoid so many split ends. I always recommend a natural bristle brush to move oils down the strands of hair and to stimulate the scalp. A hundred brushstrokes are not needed, because you shouldn’t strip all the oils out, and that’s what can happen with over-brushing. And, use a mild shampoo and a conditioner. When it comes to coloring your hair, let the professionals do it. We have better products than the ones you can buy over-the-counter.

Wash your hairbrushes and combs in sudsy ammonia to remove the oil from your hair, and rinse well. This should be done every two weeks, or at least once a month. — Tammy S., Trenton, New Jersey

QUIZ: WHAT PRODUCT IN YOUR KITCHEN CARRIES THE MOST GERMS?

A. Your can opener

B. Your refrigerator handles

C. Your dish towels

D. Your sponge

The answer is your sponge. You’re better off cleaning your sponge occasionally in the dishwasher and using paper towels to wipe up spills or clean your countertops. — Heloise.

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Hints from Heloise run occasionally in Lifestyles. Readers may send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE, or email: Heloise@Heloise.com. Letters won’t be answered personally.

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