Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Proposition 13 turns 28

Today marks the 28th birthday of proposition 13 -- a law that capped property tax increases in a time of runaway assessment values. I think its time is coming here in Canada.

From wiki:

Under Proposition 13, the real estate tax on a parcel of residential property is limited to 1% of its assessed value, until the property is resold. This "assessed value", however, may only be increased by a maximum of 2% per year.


Chad Moats said...

I have no issue with this idea. In fact, I would prefer that property taxes be reduced.
But when approaching this issue, and using the USA as a model, one must not be negligent to metion that they also levy other taxes.
In the US, another form of property tax is the personal property tax, which can target

automobiles, boats and similar vehicles;
other durable goods (though typically household goods and personal effects are exempt);
intangible assets such as stocks and bonds.
or visit here to see abreaksown of revenue sources avilable to western americain cities vs. western Canadian cities.

David MacLean said...

Taxation powers for municipalities looks great on paper. Property taxes are awful. Problem is, with the current crop of politicians, tax powers is code for tax hikes. That's not on.

Chad Moats said...

Maybe its time for a new breed of politician then David. I'm, surprised our Mayor is asking for tax transfers yet not espousing how much it could reduce the burden on property taxes.
The fact is Cities in USA can enact legislation like that without damaging their bottom line, as they have other sources. The overall effect being roughly equal tax burdens for both nations' cities.
Tax powers may never be in the cards but with the current PM's penchant for devolution. Hopefully we can see some tax sharing from the provinces, especially if he fixes equalization. Though he hinted at federal cuts being occupied by provinces, etc.

Scott Hennig said...

I'm not sure why we would want to encourage more "tax-sharing" between levels of governments.

Granted there is only one taxpayer, but there are three "tax-takers", and they each need to be responsible for the money they collect.

If the federal government gives the City of Saskatoon $10 million and they spend it on a new "spoon museum" instead of roads, who should the taxpayers be upset with, the city for wasting the money or the federal government for giving them the money?

I say no more transfers for anyone. Everyone collect the amount of money you need to run your level of government and quit shifting around our tax dollars between each other.

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