Las Vegas Sun

October 20, 2014

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letter to the editor:

The Legislature and property taxes

In the March 7 story “Property tax caps now a hindrance?” Clark County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani was quoted as saying property taxes are the most stable funding. It’s true, as long as government doesn’t intervene without considering the consequences.

Our state Legislature never recognized that property tax caps should have been a two-way proposition. Property values never go down, right? With a Legislature that’s in session only four months every two years, knee-jerk reactions become the order of the day.

Had they capped property tax reductions, the smoothing effect would have moderated the negative effects that the economic downturn created. When the Legislature convenes again, lawmakers need to address the capping issues and how we tax.

The Legislature also should realign the cost of licensing and fueling our vehicles. Everyone benefits from transportation subsidies whether they own a vehicle or use public transportation.

If equality and fairness is of any concern, nearly all transportation infrastructure funding should be via the property tax. The rationale for obtaining transportation funding via the property tax is clear. Rent or own, children or not, your property taxes fund our public schools. A property tax dedicated to transportation is not any different, as everyone benefits.

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