A Report from Denver: The 2022 NCSL

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Your faithful correspondent returned from the Legislative Summit of the National Conference of State Legislatures, held August 1-3, 2022. Since our mission is to present politically neutral and “just the facts, ma’am” research, it’s a blessing to meet and break bread with a political, national, and otherwise diverse audience. We like to build relationships with people on both sides of the aisle because they see that the land value tax serves the communitarian and free market philosophies.

Mass MoCA: When Does Public Investment Pay Off?

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North Adams is one of of dozens of similar towns spread across New England, and similar to small Pennsylvania manufacturing towns centered on steel, coal, and railroads. However, cities like North Adams, Lowell, Pawtucket, and others also produced a broader range of goods which supplied the world with textiles, clocks, brass, firearms, and 20th-century electronic components.  What happened in New England factory towns also happened in Pennsylvania towns and in other rustbelt towns. It's an old story: factory closures or relocation combined with changes in global trading patterns. The result? Subsequent impoverishment and depopulation of communities.

The LVT Playbook: So, how do you build a Land Value Tax?

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Imagine speaking to a Mayor and City Council. They accept the idea of a two-rate land value tax (LVT), meaning a higher tax on land assessments and a lower tax on building assessments. They agree LVT is a worthwhile change. However, keep in mind that the city will raise the same revenue as from its current one-rate property tax.

Puerto Rico: On the Edge of Some Very Risky Business

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The Puerto Rican budget depends to a high degree on the Sales and Use Tax (IVU for its Spanish acronym)  and the Commonwealth income tax and corporation tax. To pay off hundreds of billions of dollars in bonds, Puerto Rico decided to pay off the bonds with the IVU. Current bond debt and unfunded pensions amount to about $125 billion. There is no guaranteed revenue stream to rebuild infrastructure after earthquakes and hurricanes. The Commonwealth government has made its books look good by reducing aid to municipalities. Municipalities have no own-source funding. The cost of basic needs for the populace, such as energy, export facilities, and the Jones Act, makes life on an impoverished island very expensive indeed.

Is a Land Value Tax Right for Erie, Pennsylvania?

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This report provides the results of a preliminary analysis to determine the on-the-ground effects of implementing a land value tax (LVT) in Erie, Pennsylvania.  While the findings contained herein give an accurate representation of changes in the general tax trends within the City that will result from the adoption of an LVT, CPTR recommends the conduct of a series of more detailed analyses to determine parcel-level and other effects before proceeding with adjustments to existing property tax codes, and is prepared to carry out this work with the participation and support of the City of Erie.

Is a Land Value Tax Right for Roanoke, Virginia?

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This report provides the results of a preliminary analysis to determine the on-the-ground effects of implementing a land value tax (LVT) in Roanoke Virginia. While the findings contained herein give an accurate representation of changes in the general tax trends within the City that will result from the adoption of an LVT, CPTR recommends the conduct of a series of more detailed analyses to determine parcel-level and other effects before proceeding with adjustments to existing property tax codes, and is prepared to carry out this work with the participation and support of the City of Roanoke.