More taxes. Says Greg Flynn at the Progressive Pulse:
There is an alternative to property tax that 7 NC Counties already have: a Land Transfer Tax option that 6 of those counties exercise. But that authority needs to be delegated by the NC General Assembly to each of those remaining 93 counties
It is time for all NC Counties to have the revenue options that some counties enjoy. It’s time to support the Transfer Tax option to provide fair funding for good growth and to ease the property tax burden for seniors and others on fixed or low incomes.
It’s a refrain they never seem to grow weary of. Like children on the way to the beach singing "99 Bottles of Beer". Never a thought to better budgeting. Nor redirecting resources wasted on other things. The bureaucrat and the progressive learn one thing in their paltry Public Administration graduate programs (and it ain’t supply side economics): find new ways to tax.
Now, as abominable as more taxes on property is, taxing transfers of property is not some ingenious alternative. First, inward migration assumes that people are coming here, buying property and paying more in taxes. So it’s not clear that there’s a real infrastructural shortfall at the county level. If there truly is, it’s surely because resources are being gobbled up by our wasteful state government. But really: could we really count on a transfer tax to be a replacement for any of our property taxes? Since when has government ever behaved this way?
Given the fact that older people are very often transferring their property – (downsizing and using the equity for retirement) – it’s not clear that such a policy would be beneficial to elderly people.
Is there no waste in these local budgets? Adding yet more to North Carolinian’s tax burden (which is higher than all of our contiguous neighbors) isn’t likely to encourage newcomers. Maybe progressives don’t want newcomers, but they’re propping up the economy right now — despite the state’s irresponsible fiscal policy. And what about affordable housing? How would this make housing more affordable for people climbing the property ladder? Sure, we need to find ways to fund infrastructure. But why not lets look for funds in places governments currently squander them, rather than fancying it creative to introduce more taxes.
Here’s a comprehensive case against transfer taxes.