State Government

Property taxes to rise despite $65 million surplus

It’s been known since December that there is a $65 million education fund surplus, with property taxes slated to rise despite this surplus.

The Governor wants to use that surplus to buy down property tax. A Democratic plan is not readily apparent. However, last year, there were a number of their own tax breaks the party looked to direct this surplus to fund. Ultimately, a balance was struck, which can be read here

This week, legislators heard from the Department of Taxes that roughly two-thirds of towns have properties that are undervalued by the state’s metric, the Common Level of Appraisal, or CLA. This is due to the flurry of activity we’ve seen in the last three years in the real estate market, which pushed up property values.

A statewide CLA could mean increased property taxes for some if – and this is the linchpin here – the state could find the human capacity to perform the CLA in this labor market. 

Also this week, the Ways and Means Committee heard from the Tax Payer Advocate and others that the state’s property tax system is overly complicated and that households have trouble navigating our state’s property tax credits. The sentiment was echoed by a senior Senator that same day who remarked that Vermont “fails on all accounts” when it comes to having a simple tax system. 

Added onto all of these variables, work done last year on the formula per-pupil education spending, will have a large reshuffling effect that will certainly have some winners and losers. – Lake Champlain Chamber

Finally, an off-session study committee tasked with researching the prospect of moving education funding from a residential property tax to a statewide income tax delivered their final report. The conclusion, “[i]t is challenging to make definitive recommendations regarding a theoretical tax structure that is without precedent in any other state” and “[a] change of this magnitude and complexity should be approached with great caution.”

Categories: State Government

16 replies »

  1. As I opined on TNR – make no mistake, the Education Equity Alliance, representing the Vermont NEA, the Vermont Principals’ Association, the Vermont Superintendents Association, and the Vermont School Boards Association, is as despotic a group of people as has ever been assembled here in Vermont.

    Those who disagree with them are enemies of the State, domestic terrorists, and conspiracy theorists. We live and reproduce at the behest of the ‘Administrative State’, no longer controlling our own lives or the lives of our children, ceding all authority to “a compelling State interest’. Our mere existence is a threat to civilization, whatever the Administrative State deems that to be. We exist to feed the beast, be it the public education monopoly, the healthcare establishment and ‘big pharma’, the social services cartels, government workers, and the so-called ‘elected’ officials managing our affairs.

    • Well said Jay! If we follow the money we will find corruption on the other end.
      The beast will steal money anywhere it can to survive.

      • The VTNEA beast only steals our money because a majority of voters in Vermont keep putting the party that they own back in power, this time with a veto-proof majority. Go out in public and look around at your fellow Vermont voters if you want someone to blame.

      • richlachapelle: The U.S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS data show that 40% of the Vermont workforce is employed in the education, health, and government sectors. It is an insurmountable voting block. Two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch.

      • H. Jay Eshelman, that is the elephant in the room that is killing free thinking Vermonters. From the get go, 40% of Vermonters are thinking about themselves first . . . their income and benefit ahead of what is best for Vermonters and our children.

      • Who says he’s thinking just of himself? You shouldn’t presume to know his situation. What if he is homeless? What if he believes that he’s homeless because of these taxes that anonymous people with more money than sense impose to “help” the children or say what’s best for him?

        I’m sure of one thing, 3+ billion dollars in unfunded liability isn’t good for any Vermonters, and especially the children, the ones that will eventually have to pay it as we kick the can down the road. Yet here you are saying that he’s thinking of himself first, when in all reality he’s just thinking, and clearly more than you are.

      • Anonymous: We all act in our own self-interest. Anyone who speaks otherwise is lying to himself.

        “It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. We address ourselves, not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities but of their advantages. Nobody but a beggar chuses to depend chiefly upon the benevolence of his fellow citizens.” —Adam Smith,

        The difference rests in our freedom to choose with whom we act.

        “The most important single central fact about a free market is that no exchange takes place unless both parties benefit. Most economic fallacies derive from the tendency to assume that there is a fixed pie, that one party can gain only at the expense of another.” —Milton Friedman

      • Another pearl of wisdom:

        “The great virtue of a free market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another to deal with one another and help one another.”
        ― Milton Friedman

  2. Clearly, the “affordability” plan is to raise taxes while inflation is at an all time high and GDP is in negative numbers. The urgency of helping the homeless is to tax more people out of their homes. The current legislative session has barely started and the detonation plan to implode the State is well underway.

  3. I once asked the tax commissioner to build a spreadsheet that would simplify the returns people over 65 on Social Security. The response was no one wanted to build one because the population here was too small to earn a return on it. — Meaning no one in the department has the brains to build a spread sheet normal people can use, and we just have to keep using 5 forms, because that is how it is.

    • Excellent point. Streamlining and simplifying the process would save money and time. However, the pork-fed State of Vermont has no interest in saving taxpayers money or time as it is a threat to their job security and it may entail actually doing their jobs. In other words, how dare you!

  4. Most states with theses large surpluses are either giving money back to taxpayers or lowering state taxes, only Vermont will not, instead work on the out of state homeless providing them a room on our dime 👎👎🥲🥲🇺🇸🇺🇸 😢

  5. JUST MORE of OUR HARD EARNED DOLLARS STOLEN to feed our Politicians and their Friends.

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