You might be surprised at some of these innovative ways governments are bringing in more revenues today…
In October 2015 Edina, Minnesota announced a 7% property tax hike to make up for the money it’s losing on municipally owned liquor stores. It’s not that residents have given up alcohol, they just decided to start going across the street to a more affordably priced and competitively run privately owned wine and more superstore. Apparently the city aims to sober up locals by skyrocketing the amount they have to pay in property taxes instead.
Even though over 50% of the US prison population is made up of drug offenders, overwhelmingly led by marijuana crimes (27.6%), states like Colorado have apparently found it more profitable to make money on marijuana sales tax revenues instead. CO marijuana tax revenue is expected to more than double in 2015 to $125 million.
Alabama, Mississippi, and Missouri are just three of the US states recently embroiled in lawsuits for preying on poor residents, including the homeless, and routinely locking them up in illegal debtor’s prisons until they can pay their debts. Often these ‘debts’ stemmed from traffic tickets and other minor, and questionable fines.
New fines for not being able to afford expensive healthcare keep climbing. A recent quote for health insurance for a family of three from Florida Blue revealed a minimum monthly premium of almost $800 per month. If you got fined for not being able to afford health insurance last year when you filed your federal income taxes, you’ll have to work an extra 53 and a half hours per month, for a minimum wage of at least $15 an hour in order to afford this insurance and avoid owing the government even more when tax season comes around.
Annual Property Taxes
In New York property tax assessments and bills are notoriously and admittedly incorrect for at least 40% to 50% of property owners each year. To be fair, some local agency representatives do encourage NY homeowners to check the tax collector’s math and challenge and appeal property tax bills each year, so they only pay their fair amount.
Who says America doesn’t still lead in innovation and creative thinking? Not everyone may want to drink more, consume marijuana, give up driving, or pay for expensive healthcare insurance just to lower their tax bills. Fortunately, if you live in Nassau or Suffolk County, NY there is a good chance you can substantially slash your taxes this year by having a property tax adjuster help you appeal your assessment and bill.