Archive for Friday, December 8, 2006

Tax concerns

December 8, 2006


To the editor:

For those shocked by your recent property tax bills, the city manager and three city commissioners are about to increase them again. On Dec. 12, the city manager is going to ask the City Commission to increase impact fees, taxes, on new homes to help pay for new communitywide parks. These increased fees increase everyone's property taxes because the cost of new homes is part of the basis for setting assessed valuations of existing homes. The City Commission is not stopping there.

The Dec. 6 Journal-World article "City takes pass on gas proposal" outlines a litany of tax increases on housing to help pay for infrastructure maintenance and to subsidize affordable housing.

Additionally the City Commission's Housing Needs Task Force is considering various cost exactions, tax increases, on new homes to help subsidize affordable homes.

If these actions and attitudes are not stopped, your property taxes will continue to spiral upward.

The above would not even come up if the commission had a long-range financial action plan to broaden our tax base beyond residential properties.

Commissioner Rundle recently lamented the fact the state has placed some tax lids on local governments. Rundle says the state legislators need to place more trust in local governments. Rundle says, "The state seems to be overly concerned with looking over the shoulders of local governments on how they spend money or raise revenue. They should leave that to local voters who elect or de-elect local leaders."

De-elect is good!

David Reynolds,



just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 11 years, 5 months ago

Mr Reynolds laments that subsidies to his business ventures may be at risk.

Stephen Roberts 11 years, 5 months ago

Bozo- What subsidies to his business?

I think we need to tax organic food stores more!!!

Tax lawyers more!!!

Tax art more !!!!

We should those first and see how quickly Rundle, Shauner and Boog cry like little babies.

I don't mind paying taxes but this is getting out of hand. Our social program (nice in theory) need to be curtailed). The Progressive ideas need to be curtailed.

Why spend 250,000 on study after study when we could hire someone for 60,000 to do more studies?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 11 years, 5 months ago

"Bozo- What subsidies to his business?"

His complaints focus primarily on taxes that would require new construction to pay their own way, which they don't do so well at right now.

And he couldn't care less what your taxes are otherwise.

Richard Heckler 11 years, 5 months ago

"Mr.Reynolds: The above would not even come up if the commission had a long-range financial action plan to broaden our tax base beyond residential properties."

The real estate industry is placing the blame of high property taxes on the three amigos who have been City Commissioners for a short period of time. The problem is one that began around 1987. The real estate industry majority controlled the city,county and planning commissions until about 2002. That's 15 years.

During that period the primary focus was the real estate industry aka new residential which grew leaps and bounds no question about it. Why didn't this group in 15 years provide a long-range financial action plan to broaden our tax base beyond residential properties? Why didn't this group bring in the light industrial upscale salaried positions?

The real estate industry can make greater profits from a piece of property constructing residential than can be made providing one large structure. This large structure pays higher property taxes than residential and would be a likely source for upscale salaries. Retail does not offer the number of high salaried positions such that light industrial consistently offers.

Light Industrial =Eco-Industrial Development - means a community of manufacturing and service businesses seeking enhanced environmental and economic performance through collaboration in managing environmental and resources issues including energy, water and materials. By working together, the community of businesses seeks a collective benefit which is greater than the sum of the individual benefits each company would realize if it optimized its individual performance only (source: Lowe, Moran and Holmes, 1996).

Light Industrial = Office like structures that would house medical research would fit into Light Industrial - which means industrial uses that conduct their operations such that no nuisance factor is created or apparent outside an enclosed building that would make the use compatible with adjacent non-industrial uses. These areas are usually accompanied with nice landscapes and other green space.

The bottom line is the real estate housing industry cashed in big time and our property taxes spiraled up as we all know and continue to do so. What was forgotten was balanced growth and a long range range financial action plan to broaden our tax base beyond residential properties. This is where light industrial high salaried positions SHOULD HAVE fit.

dviper 11 years, 5 months ago

Very good LTE.

Bozo - name one subsidy Mr. Reynolds receives. You can't without your usual lies, and distortion of the truth.

New construction pays for itself and more! Guess what the city charges for a 2" water meter which is typical for many businesses. The price tag is $20,000. The actual cost of the water meter is $1,900. The city is making $18,100 on that which is suppose to be used for "system development". Yeah right:.until the Kommissioners got their grubby little hands on it, and spent it.

Your PLC commissioners are wasting that money and the general public's tax money, on crap like traffic circles, non-calming traffic devices, flowers for downtown, ignored studies that the PLC doesn't like but paid big dollars for, etc:.

Merrill no intelligent person believes the crap you write or rather 'cut and paste' every freakin day. And, don't you get it; Lawrence will never develop light industrial of the type you would like. Those days and jobs are gone to:.Mexico and now to China.

Lawrencians wake up and vote the 3 PLC bozos out of office in April.

Stephen Roberts 11 years, 5 months ago

Dviper- You the man. I agree with you.

I think now, people of Lawrence NEED to vote AGAINST anyone who is supported by the PLC.

budwhysir 11 years, 5 months ago

I am not concerned about my tax rate. I am very aware of what my taxes are about to do. In all the years I have been paying them, they have never gone down.

No surprises here.

Godot 11 years, 5 months ago

LJW, August 23, 2005: "The Lawrence school board on Monday passed the largest tax increase in six years.

"It's going to benefit Lawrence kids," board President Leonard Ortiz said.

The $111.9 million net budget includes a 5.504 mill increase.

That means the owner of a $100,000 home who paid $491 in school taxes now will pay $554.

The additional funds will cover salaries, technology improvements, and other benefits to students, Ortiz said.

And they also help the district keep up with the rising costs of doing business, board member Sue Morgan said. The district is paying for increased costs of fuel, utilities, and insurance.

The tax increase helps pay for the $63 million bond issue passed by voters in April.

The board also opted to increase taxes for the local option budget to the maximum amount."

Funny. The taxes on my $150,000 home increased by over $300.

The JW should print a retraction and correction of the misinformation they published.

Godot 11 years, 5 months ago

Why, then, is the school board compiling a list of maintenance concerns that may require another tax increase? Why did the school board increase the mill levy again this year? What did they not include in the bond issue that they should have? Or, what did they include in the bond issue that they are not funding now, and are expecting us to pay for again? What did we get for that bond issue?

Lawrence kids, give us some input. Are you now learning more, are you better prepared to enter the adult world, are you doing better on your tests, are you more challenged in your classes?

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