Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor
Letters to the editor are a great way to focus attention on the need for Prop. 13 reform. Getting LTEs published shows the public that this reform will generate over $10 billion each year for schools and public services without raising taxes on homeowners or renters. Below is the list of LTEs that have been published in support of making large corporations pay their fair share.
For tips on how to write and submit your own letter, check out our LTE Campaign Action Center!
Proposition 13's gift to commercial property owners
Columnist Conor Friedersdorf touched on the topic of commercial parcels but quickly switched subjects in his Proposition 13 tax revolt discussion. He didn’t dare reveal the hidden Prop. 13 provision that allows commercial/industrial property to avoid assessment when the property is sold.
A Prop.13 loophole stipulated that if less than half of the property value is sold to a new owner, the transaction will not trigger (avoids) a property tax reassessment. Ergo, ownership of most commercial/industrial holdings are divided between three or more investors. They always limit sales to less than half of the ownership, avoiding property tax increases year after year for decades.
That ploy shifted the property tax burden to residential property. Before, Prop.13 residential owners bore about 55% of the total property tax burden Today, they bear more than 70% while commercial property owners share less than 30%
It’s high time for those commercial/industrial properties to be reassessed to current market value and the fractional exemption should be eliminated.
Invest in schools again
Regarding “Teacher protests put GOP on the spot in red states” (Nation, April 5): Increasing education funding is essential to teachers and schools. It is great to see so many teacher protests across red states like Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona because of poor public education funding. However, let us not forget that poor education funding is not limited just to Republican states. Most people don’t know that California — one of the most Democratic states in the nation — is actually on par with several of these red states in education funding. We are consistently ranked within the bottom 10 states even though California used to lead the nation in education funding during the 1960s. Now is the time to finally tackle the root of California’s education problem: Proposition 13. Reforming Prop. 13 is the best thing we can do to invest in our schools again.
Teachers in these states are standing up for what they deserve and barely getting an increase in funding. The leaders in these states are more worried about their re-election than they are the well-being of their state and its future residents. Investing in children’s education is the most important thing to do. Rep. Kyle Hilbert has the right view of his position as a public servant, as long as he does something good for his district it doesn’t matter if he gets re-elected.
Education funding is lacking all over the country, especially in these red states, but even a dark blue state such as California is in the bottom 10 for education funding. To fund our schools, we should change outdated laws such as Prop. 13. California, for example, could gain billions of dollars annually for education funding by reforming Prop. 13 and making corporations pay their fair share and keep protections for homeowners.
Full List of Published LTEs: