LVT, The Series–Part 2

I have been asked how will the LVT assist a community–it is best stated by the Center for the Study of Economics and The Henry George Foundation Of America:

Why Would a Community Implement Land Value Taxation?

•           A shift to LVT, even when structured in a revenue-neutral manner, usually results in net tax reductions for the vast majority of residents.

•           The problem of inaccurate or radically higher assessments is reduced because of the reduction in reliance on the building portion of the property tax.

•           The damage that taxes like sales and income taxes do to working families and local commerce can be lessened.

•           By reducing or eliminating the tax on improvements, there is a greater incentive to build, to build with higher quality materials, to maintain, to avoid blight, and to redevelop economically depressed areas.

•           Cities are almost always on the “short end of the stick” when economic development dollars are handed out.  This program helps achieve the same goals with no public investment.

•           When cities DO get permission to give out tax abatements, they lead to a revenue loss to the community with no assured payoff later.  LVT is purely revenue neutral to the city.  There is no tax shifting to citizens and property owners who have already done their bit.

•           A tax on land also has the advantage of being a “value capture tax.”  A new public works project may make adjacent land go up considerably in value, and thus, with a tax on land values, the tax on adjacent land goes up.  Thus, the new public improvements would be paid for by those most benefited by the new public improvements — i.e., those whose land value went up most.

•           A tax on land has been shown to result in better land use patterns and more in-fill development.  This has the benefit of reducing sprawl.

•           Several Nobel Prize winners in economics have stated their approval of government revenue being raised from taxes on land.

•           Support for LVT cuts across political lines.  Free-market economists like how it reduces distortions in economic decision-making.  Environmentalists like how it reduces sprawl and helps fund public transportation.  Developers appreciate how it makes new homes more affordable for their customers.  Citizens like the reduction in taxes.

This is a proposal that has come to call, especially now when the economy is tankinbg and communitiesd will soon be feeling the raising problem of sagging revenues.  Yes there is a plan to inject lots of cash into communities to head off the approaching economic storm.  But ask yourself, when those cash cows are gone where will the renvenue come from to continue the improvemnts to the community?

LVT will save communities from the revenue crisis that they are ALWAYS having.


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