Support Property Tax Fairness

Resolution Number SAC09.22A

Support Property Tax Fairness

WHEREAS, the assessment system for non-residential commercial property in California represents a huge failing in our tax system, costing local governments and schools billion of dollars annually and allowing corporations and other non-residential commercial property owners to avoid realistic reassessment until their property changes hands; and

WHEREAS, the under-assessment of large commercial properties for property tax purposes encourages cities and towns to rely instead on sales taxes which leads to big-box retailing projects and sprawl and because commercial property tax assessment is constrained by law, homeowners are paying an increased share of the property tax burden, which is estimated to be as much as 25% higher for homeowners and raising their share of property taxes from 32 to 40%, while large commercial properties benefit from under-assessment; and

WHEREAS, it is grossly unfair for homeowners and small business owners to pay such an increasingly larger share of California’s property taxes while large commercial properties go virtually untouched by regular assessments when a fair system of assessment for such properties could provide billions in additional revenue for California’s under-funded cities, counties, schools, hospitals, police, firefighters, community colleges, universities, libraries, public transit and other local government services;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED,
that the California Democratic Party supports a property tax system within California that would make large corporations and big businesses pay their fair share of property taxes while assuring that small businesses and farms are not overburdened and that residential properties and homeowners maintain their current legal assessment protection of no more than a 2% rise annually.

Submitted by the Resolutions Committee

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Adopted by the Executive Board
Of the California Democratic Party
At its Executive Board Meeting
Crowne Plaza Hotel, Burlingame
July 19, 2009

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