On Tuesday, June 5th the voters of Davis will have the choice of approving or rejecting Measure D as a special parcel tax measure on the ballot to authorize the continuance of an additional parcel tax of $49.per single and mufti-residential unit parcel and $40 per 1,000 square feet for commercial parcels for a term of six (6) years commencing with the 2012-2013 tax year.
Below are the problems associated with Measure Dís provisions that justify its defeat:
EXCESSIVE USE OF THE SPECIAL TAXATION BALLOT MEASURE PROCESS AND THE RESULTING ESCALATION OF OVERALL PARCEL TAX RATES::
Non-partially exempt City of Davis property owners are already assessed an excessive number of ten (10) special property tax assessments (thirteen (13) for parcel owners in the Mace Ranch Subdivision) as a result the passage of special tax ballot measures in recent elections originating from various local government organizations amounting to an average total of approximately $1,414 annually in additional property tax assessments beyond the minimum Local Agencies rate on the tax bill. Additionally, local residents are also being faced with the negative economic impacts of ever rising fees, utility rates (with the recently proposed increases to triple the current local water rates being one (1) such example that the rate of taxation is becoming excessive and out of control to the point that the amount of special taxes and bond now exceeds the Local Agencies Rate alone on many local tax bills.
PROPERTY TAXATION IS AN INVOLUNTARY MEANS OF REVENUE COLLECTION::
Property taxation is an involuntary means to collect revenue to fund the services and programs of governmental entities and opposed to user fees charged for services of specific services they use, all property owners are legally required to pay such special tax assessments if they are authorized by a vote. Regardless, whether some of these taxpayers use the specific services a specific tax assessment seeks to fund or not and regardless of their personal capability to afford to pay such taxes..Therefore, voluntary contribution programs and limited user fee collections are a better alternative for funding these services that a special parcel tax.
LOW INCOME PARCEL TAX REFUND PROGRAM IS INSUFFICIENT::
The provisions of Measure D (as is the case with Measures G (that it proposes to renew and O also) offer no exemptions to low income taxpayers whatsoever as only a refund program is provided with refunds made only after full payment of the tax is made first thereby placing additional unnecessary hardship on them.
UNFAIR TAX STRUCTURE::
The provisions of Measure D tax all residential parcels (with the exception of commercial parcels) at the same rate regardless of their square footage so lower income property owners would be subject to the same rate as higher income property owners creating an unfairness in the rate of taxation levied especially towards lower income property owners. Unfortunately, Measure D and no other special parcel taxes locally assess property taxation utilizing the square footage formula for residential parcels unlike some special parcel taxes imposed by some local governmental entities in California have done after such proposed parcel taxes have been voted in by other local electorates.
The adjustment of any such lowering from the maximum amount authorized to be assessed by Measure D (if it passes) or a discontinuance of this parcel tax altogether would be entirely left to the discretion of the Davis City Council which is unlikely to take such an action due to the "tax to the max" position that is likely to influence such decision making against a position to respect the interests of individual taxpayers,
UNFAIR TO RENTERS::
Measure D's provisions assess renters indirectly an identical rate of $49 annually for units in multi-family housing paid directory by the parcel owners through rental fee collections from the same as owners of single family unit parcels.
THE CITY OF DAVIS HAS A RECORD OF MAKING WASTEFUL SPENDING DECISIONS::
In general, it doesn't make economic sense to vote to approve a special tax to support a city service because the City of Davis has a long established record of wasteful spending decisions such as the recent 3-2 vote by the City Council at the Tuesday, April 10th meeting to raise the compensation of the the City Council Membership from $670 to $1,000 a year and of course the well known excessive compensation packages for employees and retirees as well. This apparent situation could affect the budgetary situation affecting the parks as well.
EXPECT BALLOT MEASURES PROPOSING HIGHER TAX RATES IN THE FUTURE::
If Measure D passes, the situation will likely further encourage the City Council to place additional special parcel tax proposals on the ballot in future elections therefore likely contributing to higher overall property tax rates in the future. This situation is apparent because a pattern of previous decisions made by the City Council in taking such actions: first it was Measure M the Parks Tax (1988), second was Measure O: the Open Space Protection Tax (2000) and then third Measure P the Sales Tax (2004) and then the passage of their subsequent renewal measures in elections over the years ever since. The City Council will likely continue making excuses for these actions by blaming the state and county governments for causing local funding shortfalls rather than demonstrating fiscal prudency and therefore continue being supportive of the "tax to the max" position of constantly taking the above mentioned actions. But we the voters can as a positive response vote to defeat Measure D and future special tax measures by all local governmental entities and influence the City Council to stop using the local taxpayers as a "scapegoat" in this regard and restore a more affordable cost of living situation to the middle and lower income taxpayers of Davis by minimizing the already excessive high overall property tax burden locally.
A CASE IN POINT AGAINST MEASURE D: THE AUTHOR'S PROSPECTIVE::
For example, my father is a senior citizen of low to middle retirement
pay income. He is eligible for full and partial exemptions from the
special parcel taxes imposed by Measures Q, W and A and Community Facilities District (CFD #1). The above mentioned are all special parcel tax assessments that are imposed by the Davis Joint Unified School District (DJUSD) similarly like Measures O: The Open Space Tax and G: The Parks Tax that are currently imposed by the City of Davis. My father is exempted from all these special parcel tax assessments and he not only benefits from the reduction per year on his tax bill, but he can pass along rental rates to college student renters. These student renters would be otherwise charged a higher rate to rent rooms in his residence. Another example is my stepmother, who is a local business owner and a senior citizen with low income status. She receives such exemptions as well. She not only benefits from such a exemption in regard to her residence, but also benefits from her business as well. Her parcel is a combined
business and rental property. This allows her to pass on lower and
reasonable prices to her customers. Without these benefits, the prices
for her goods would be higher and the customers would not be paying less.
Clearly, the examples listed above express why the overall excessively expanding special parcel tax burden in the City of Davis needs to be reversed and lowered with the defeat of Measure D and not continuously raised by the passage of this ballot measure to relieve any continuing negative economic impacts from such excessive tax burdens among parcel property owners locally. .
Vote No on Measure D.
Defend Individual Taxpayer Interests.
There is a Facebook page for the No on Measure D campaign that has been posted online as well that can be viewed at the following webpage address (click below):
Authorized by the No City Council Taxes Committee ID# 1347480
P.O. BOX 1076
DAVIS CA 95617-1076
For more information regarding the campaign against Measure D. Please contact the following person:
Coleman Thomas "Tom" Randall, Jr
by e-mail at email@example.com
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