Are property taxes fair?
Think about this: A city doesn't increase the tax levy in a particular year yet thousands of owners get property tax increases. Why? And if the city gets no more from the tax levy, where does that extra money go?
Currently, Rhode Island towns must be revalued every third year. This does ensure that new owners will be fairly taxed on the market value of the property they bought. But the previous paragraph clearly shows that current owners don't pay a fair tax.
The fact is that thousands will pay more taxes than the levy requires and thousand will pay less. In fact, after a revaluation, part of every property owner's higher tax bill will be used, not to pay for services like schools, police, fire etc., but to make up for someone else's lower tax bill, often as not, someone who has a more expensive property. Is this fair?
"That's how it has always been done", said Steve Ferreira district manager of Vision Government Soutions, Providence's appraisal company, in a Journal article. But does that make it right?
A revaluation does tax new owners fairly but does not tax existing owners fairly. When there is no revaluation, the opposite happens - existing owners pay a fair tax but a new owner simply inherits the prior owner's tax. Our current property tax system is always wrong for someone.
a fair tax system, all tax bills would be adjusted enough to fund the tax
levy, no more, no less, similar to what currently happens in a non-revaluation
year - if the levy increases, say 3.4%, everyone would get a 3.4% increase.
But a new owner who buys a property for much more than the current assessed value simply inherents the prior owner's tax bill. A revaluation insures the new owner pays a fair tax, but it also produces the very unfair results mentioned above. How can this be resolved?
new owners have no tax bill to adjust,
their tax will be based on the current assessed value of their purchase, using a rate determined the same way as in a standard revaluation
Their future tax bills will then be adjusted the same as everyone else.
We call it an Owners Tax.
BENEFITS OF AN OWNERS TAX
|• Fair and reasonable taxes
for everyone each and every year
|• Tax bill increases are limited
and predictable resulting in...
|• A better
|• Lower revaluation
reviews become unnecessary
|• Revenue is unaffected -