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By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | February 7, 2014
Saying she's convinced Baltimore's high property taxes are driving residents and business away, Del. Maggie McIntosh has introduced legislation aimed at helping retain current homeowners while launching studies of ways to reduce the rate. With support from nearly all the city's House delegation, McIntosh, a six-term Democrat representing Northeast Baltimore, has introduced five bills targeting potential inequities in the assessment of properties in the city, where tax rates are more than double those of neighboring counties.
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BUSINESS
By Natalie Sherman, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2014
Property owners could be able to apply for most city tax credits through an online system by the end of the year, a set-up designed to improve the accuracy of a process that has been troubled by errors, officials said Friday. The online system went live Friday for developers of large apartment buildings, said William Voorhees, the city's director of revenue and tax analysis. He said he expects it to open to applications for the historic properties tax credit this summer and most others by the end of the year.
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NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2013
Area billboard companies are speaking out against a proposed tax introduced this week by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. In a hearing before the City Council's taxation committee Thursday, the global billboard firm Clear Channel Outdoor offered to give the city more than $1 million in free advertising if the administration would drop plans for a tax on billboards. If not, the company's local general manager said, the city could face a lawsuit. "Will this legislation stand up to a legal challenge [that could]
NEWS
February 12, 2014
There is a simple and elegant solution to the problem of Baltimore City's property tax rate ( "New ideas for city taxes," Feb. 9). We live in the sovereign State of Maryland, and we should all pay the same property tax rate. One State, One Rate would benefit not only the residents of Baltimore City but also of many Maryland counties, likely including the majority of all Maryland citizens. It would the end the subsidization of rich counties by poorer counties. Bill Marker, Baltimore - To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com . Please include your name and contact information.
NEWS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | November 12, 2013
A broad coalition of taxi, limousine and for-hire sedan companies in Baltimore say they will refuse to pay a new city tax of 25 cents per passenger in what they are calling a collective act of civil disobedience. The first payments under the new tax, for October, are due Nov. 25, but the companies say they won't pay unless the law is changed to ease administrative burdens or they are allowed to pass the costs on to customers. "We are proud corporate citizens of Maryland and Baltimore.
NEWS
By Doug Donovan and Doug Donovan,SUN STAFF | June 2, 2004
A steady procession of business leaders told City Council members yesterday that Mayor Martin O'Malley's proposed tax package will stifle Baltimore's real estate market and make it more expensive for companies to operate in the city. Representatives from the real estate, telecommunications and nonprofit industries expressed opposition to two elements of the mayor's three-pronged tax plan aimed at eliminating a projected $40 million deficit for the fiscal year that begins July 1. The council's taxation committee held hearings yesterday on O'Malley's proposed $3.50 monthly tax on traditional and wireless phones and a proposed increase in fees for recording real estate purchases, from 0.55 percent to 1 percent.
NEWS
By Gerard Shields and Gerard Shields,SUN STAFF | June 11, 1999
The Baltimore Homeowners Coalition is using radio advertisements to criticize a city tax break for new hotels.The taxpayers group said the measure will open the door for casino gambling.During the next week, the City Council is expected to grant an estimated $75 million property tax break over 25 years to developers of the Wyndham hotel being built at President and Fleet streets in Inner Harbor East.The homeowners group contends that state law permitting the tax break also would allow the Wyndham hotel's owners, including chief partner H&S Bakery mogul John Paterakis Sr., to add casino gambling if the state ban is lifted.
BUSINESS
By Gary Gately and Gary Gately,SUN STAFF | March 21, 1996
Hoping to win over opponents of a city tax district designed to raise money for attracting tourists and conventions, the Greater Baltimore Committee proposed yesterday shrinking the district while excluding stores and bars that serve little food.But the business group's attempt to forge a compromise failed to sway opponents, including two key state legislators and the Restaurant Association of Maryland.The GBC's move, which came at a meeting in Annapolis with state senators representing Baltimore, amounted to a last-ditch attempt to win passage of a state bill that would allow the city to create a new tourism district.
BUSINESS
By Gary Gately and Gary Gately,SUN STAFF | March 29, 1996
For the second time in two months, an effort to create a new city tax district to raise money to attract conventions and tourists has failed.The bill, sponsored by state Sen. Larry Young, a Baltimore Democrat, would have enabled the city to create an independent authority empowered to collect taxes and other fees from businesses to raise money for the Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors Association.But Mr. Young's measure died yesterday without a vote when the city's Senate delegation decided against acting on it during the delegation's last scheduled meeting of this General Assembly session.
NEWS
By Eric Siegel and Eric Siegel,Staff Writer | June 18, 1993
Seeking to provide relief to overburdened Baltimore homeowners, the City Council gave preliminary approval last night to a nickel cut in the city's property tax rate.The council's action would lower the Baltimore property tax rate -- the highest by far in the state -- from $5.90 to $5.85 per $100 of assessed value.A homeowner with an assessed value of $40,000 -- the city average -- would pay $20 less a year.The final vote on the property tax cut is scheduled for Monday's council meeting, the last one before summer recess.
NEWS
February 9, 2014
The last mayoral election in Baltimore featured a spirited debate about a variety of ideas for aggressive reductions in the city's sky-high property tax rate. The winning candidate, though, was the one who called those ideas unrealistic and advocated a gradualist approach that left the basic structure of the city's property tax system intact. To her credit, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has followed through and proposed a comprehensive 10-year financial plan to reduce costs, diversify revenue streams and cut property taxes.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | February 7, 2014
Saying she's convinced Baltimore's high property taxes are driving residents and business away, Del. Maggie McIntosh has introduced legislation aimed at helping retain current homeowners while launching studies of ways to reduce the rate. With support from nearly all the city's House delegation, McIntosh, a six-term Democrat representing Northeast Baltimore, has introduced five bills targeting potential inequities in the assessment of properties in the city, where tax rates are more than double those of neighboring counties.
NEWS
November 13, 2013
A revolt is brewing among Baltimore taxi and limo operators, who are protesting a new city tax of 25 cents per passenger that went into effect Oct. 1. The taxi owners claim the new tax will be difficult to collect and that they can't pass the additional cost on to consumers by raising their rates. So, in what they are calling an act of civil disobedience, the companies say they won't pay. Meanwhile, the city is insisting it will take them to court if they don't. Before things get ugly, the city and its cabbies need to take a step back from the hole they are digging for themselves and come up with a way to end the standoff that both sides can live with.
NEWS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | November 12, 2013
A broad coalition of taxi, limousine and for-hire sedan companies in Baltimore say they will refuse to pay a new city tax of 25 cents per passenger in what they are calling a collective act of civil disobedience. The first payments under the new tax, for October, are due Nov. 25, but the companies say they won't pay unless the law is changed to ease administrative burdens or they are allowed to pass the costs on to customers. "We are proud corporate citizens of Maryland and Baltimore.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | October 15, 2013
An independent grocer's profit margin is so slim that Baltimore's bottled-beverage tax may be to blame for the pending demise of Santoni's Supermarket, industry experts said Monday. "It was, in my opinion, a prime factor" said Jeff Metzger, publisher of Food World, a regional grocery industry newspaper based in Columbia. "Of all the retailers doing business in the city, their No. 1 issue would be the unfairness of the bottle tax. " Santoni's, a Highlandtown grocer, announced Sunday that it would close its doors at the end of this month solely because of the city's bottled-beverage tax. That tax, according to chief financial officer Rob Santoni Jr., reduced the East Lombard Street store's sales by about 18 percent since its adoption in July 2010.
NEWS
By Dan Rodricks, The Baltimore Sun | October 13, 2013
Santoni's Supermarket, an institution in southeast Baltimore since the 1930s, will close by the end of the month and lay off more than 80 employees, its owner said Sunday, citing Baltimore's bottled-beverage tax as "the sole reason" for the store's failure. "Since the beverage tax levy went into effect in July 2010, Santoni's has realized total store sales loss in excess of $4 million or 18 percent," Robert Santoni Jr. said in a news release. "But the beverage sales category has experienced sales decreases exceeding 28 percent during the same time period.
NEWS
September 19, 1997
IT MAY BE September, but June is busting out all over. The city has counted the taxes collected for the last month of the past fiscal year and discovered several records were broken. Property tax collections for June reached $9.6 million, compared to $2.3 million for June 1996. Personal property tax revenue was $3.3 million, compared to $527,000 for June 1996. Penalties and interest reached $2.6 million, compared to $580,000 in June 1996.But it doesn't stop there. Income tax revenue was $19.3 million, compared to $15.6 million in June 1996.
NEWS
By Annie Linskey and Annie Linskey,annie.linskey@baltsun.com | April 28, 2009
A property tax credit meant to lure new residents to Baltimore and spur development in impoverished neighborhoods instead rewards current city dwellers who inhabit booming parts of the city, according to a report issued by the city's Finance Department. In the past nine months, 75 percent of the applications for the program, called the Newly Constructed Dwelling Tax Credit, came from 10 neighborhoods, according to the finance data. Forty percent of the credits went to households earning more than $100,000 a year.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | October 8, 2013
Chronic mistakes in Baltimore's tax bills commanded attention at City Hall Monday as the mayor said her administration is fixing the problems and the comptroller ordered an audit nonetheless. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said the city is implementing an automated system to reduce mistakes - which officials acknowledged have cost the city $11 million in the past decade - and she asked citizens to give finance officials "a chance to work. " But a City Council chairman called for an audit, and Comptroller Joan M. Pratt said her office has asked for the documents needed to perform one. "I want to make sure the citizens are being billed properly," Pratt said.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater and The Baltimore Sun | October 7, 2013
A city councilman is calling for an "immediate and thorough" audit of the city's finance department after The Sun reported on persistent tax bill errors that have caused the city to miss out on revenue. Councilman Carl Stokes, chairman of the council's taxation committee, plans to introduce two resolutions Monday about the issue. The first resolution calls for the audit, which Stokes says is necessary to "determine exactly what errors have been made in administering the city's property tax programs and how much these errors are costing the city.
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