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Taxing their way to prosperity

Ah, Massachusetts. Whenever I feel the need for something to get outraged over, laugh about, or feel good about living in New Hampshire, they always provide me with what I need.

Today I needed a little of that, and both Boston newspapers teamed up to sate my craving.

First up, we have this report from the Boston Globe. Despite voters passing "Proposition 2 1/2" 25 years ago, capping annual property tax rates from going up more than 2.5% a year, politicians have found a loophole -- they have to make sure that the tax rate hikes average 2.5% a year, so they balance jacking the hell out of residential property taxes, while bringing down commercial and industrial rates. Thanks to that little chicanery, Massachusetts homeowners can expect to pay 6.4% more next year.

Meanwhile, in Boston, whose mayor is whining about insufficient money from the state and federal governments, finally got around to looking at its own books -- and it turns out that there's about $25 million on those books that they're owed that they haven't collected. The Boston Herald took a closer look at those records, and found all sorts of interesting things -- bills on properties long after they should have been removed from the tax rolls, for one.

So the cities and towns can't keep track of what they're owed, or even how much they have, but gosh-darn it, they need even more.

And, I'm sure, they'll get it. Because they are, after all, Taxachusetts.

Comments (2)

Another in a long line of c... (Below threshold)

Another in a long line of candidates for Sarbanes Oxley: The IRS, Fannie Mae, Freddie, Mac, the EU, the entire federal government (which just flunked its audit for the 9th year in a row), and now the city of Boston.

Put all property taxes in escrow until the Mayor signs off that his city's financial statements are accurate and that the city's internal controls are adequate, just like CEOs have to.

why would a resident of Mas... (Below threshold)

why would a resident of Massachusetts expect any less chicanery? yet they keep electing the same thieves. as someone once said, it is a measure of insanity to keep doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome each time. just like socialism.
in Florida we have a partial measure of control on such chicanery. we don't have a state income tax and we do a residential cap on a homesteaded property.
Massachusetts residents ought to try getting such measures on the ballot.






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