GUARDIAN CORRESPONDENT STEVE HULME OFFERS AN OPEN LETTER TO ELECTED OFFICIALS:
Our elected “representatives” are currently giving only lip service to the notion of residential property tax relief.
Seems those tax bills, which in many cases have gone up 20 or 25 or even 33 percent over the space of a year or two, have gotten the attention of many people.
Governor Dirk addressed the issue in his State of the State address, on January 9 saying, “I recognize that property taxes are an increasing burden. I have a genuine concern in those areas of the state with rising property values, that seniors, those on fixed incomes, and the disabled might be priced out of their homes.”
He offered some relief to the poorest of the poor. A “circuit breaker” the old and infirm can apply for. Or he suggests they should be able to defer their property taxes until they die, at which time the house is sold to pay off the taxes (with interest, no doubt).
The rest of us oughtta just suck it up. Dirk says, “If citizens believe they are paying too much in property taxes, that debate belongs in the county courthouses and
the city halls.”
That’s pretty strong and principled talk, except that the duck doing the quacking is a lame duck. Other “public servants” in the statehouse are debating the issue. Some of them want to get re-elected, so they’re giving it a little more attention.
Amazingly, some are arguing that any homeowner relief would simply shift the burden to other property taxpayers. Was this same argument brought up last year, when it
was decided to give huge corporations tax breaks on their property?
I didn’t just fall off a beet truck, but maybe I’m dumb. Can somebody explain to me how it works?
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