This guest post comes from long time GUARDIAN reader “IDAHOLIC.” He makes a valid point that individual property owners will get whacked in the pocketbook if the personal property tax–paid in large part by big operators like power and telephone companies–is repealed.
I can’t believe the lack of information and discussion of this proposal that has been cloaked in the concept of unburdening business of an unfair tax. I am amazed at the brazen presentation of the proposal by the Governor’s office. As if they feel no one will notice or object.
AP reports Otter’s plan would eliminate the estimated $140 million tax on business equipment by 2019 or 2020, according to the Idaho State Tax Commission.
Under the proposal, Idaho’s taxpayer-supported general fund would replace about $90 million that cities, counties, schools and other local governments stand to lose under the repeal. Local governments would have options to replace the remaining amount if they decide they need to, by shifting the burden to homeowners and other classes of real property.
The Governor’s office says it has distributed this proposal to all of the stakeholders. Well, it looks like they missed the most largest group: citizen homeowners. Ultimately the average homeowner, and other property taxpayers will absorb this shift in order to increase corporate profits.
The Governor wants to use general funds–tax money we have dutifully paid– to subsidize corporations who don’t feel they should pay for services critical to their operation. They get a guaranteed return on the “investment,” and in the case of the [power companies they have a monopoly.
IACI, whose job it is to put lipstick on this pig, glosses over the true impact of the shift. Their talking suit, Alex LaBeau says, “…it isn’t nearly as dramatic as it sounds”. Nice try!
Then to lighten the impact on schools, the proposal would allow school districts to raise levies (our property taxes) WITHOUT A VOTE OF THE PEOPLE!
Who in the hell do these people work for? I guess we are not stakeholders! Do we all need to mortgage our homes, quit our jobs, buy Brooks Brother’s suits, make political contributions, buy lunches, threaten to leave the state, or whatever it takes to gain the same influence as the big boys?
Maybe it’s time to break out the pitchforks and torches!
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