Property taxes increase four times more than lost Market Value Credit funding
ST. PAUL, January 12, 2012 – Minnesota House Tax Committee Chair Greg Davids, R-Preston, issued the following response today to the House DFL’s false property tax claims:
Only Democrats would see the loss of $90 million as the cause for a $400 million tax increase. Their math doesn’t add up and neither does their argument. It looks more to me like they’re exploiting it for politics than they are actually trying to find a solution. Our solution, as it was during the 2011 legislative session, is to reduce and phaseout the statewide property tax on Commercial/Industrial properties. Although they opposed it last year, I hope the DFL will now support such a measure if their words are born out of true concern and not just political rhetoric.
Representative Linda Runbeck, R-Circle Pines, Chair of the Property Tax Division, had this to say:
Local governments must be held accountable for their spending. We eliminated a highly flawed program, an action supported by the League of Minnesota Cities and the Association of Minnesota Counties. This was an act to allow for more transparency, and starts to shift the paradigm from property tax relief filtered through government to relief provided directly to the tax payer. I am encouraged by the actions some local governments have taken to increase their efficiencies, whereas the DFL would prefer sending out blank checks.
Simple facts the DFL would like you to ignore:
- The proposed $413 million tax increase is more than four times the amount that cities and counties lost when the MVHC program was replaced. The final MVHC funding was $89 million, it seems highly suspect that losing it would result in a $413 million tax increase.
- In 2010, Representative Ann Lenczewski zeroed out the MVHC reimbursement for many suburbs, including just naming a few: Burnsville, Apple Valley, Inver Grove Heights, Bloomington, Edina, Coon Rapids, Blaine, and Woodbury. Again, this was done in 2010 - when Democrats ran the Legislature.
- For as much as they claim to care about LGA and the former Market Value Credit, the DFL voted against, and Governor Dayton vetoed, a bill to keep LGA and MVHC reimbursements at the previous year’s levels. This would have been the same aid amounts Democrats voted and approved when they were chairs.
- The DFL voted against, and Governor Dayton vetoed, a bill reducing and phasing out the Statewide Property Tax on Commercial/Industrial properties. These properties are taxed once at the local level, and should not be punished twice on the same property by the state.
Their math doesn't add up, they voted against everything and they're attacking Republicans for continuing funding levels Democrats themselves set in place. It begs the question: Do Democrats truly care about property tax relief, or are they simply playing politics?
House Republicans last November released a new property tax relief package aimed at ending the statewide business property tax and providing tax relief directly to homeowners.