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Tax Revolt

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NEWS
September 21, 1990
The Maryland Court of Appeals has yet to explain the legal reasoning behind its stunning impromptu decision yesterday which allows voters to arbitrarily limit property assessment increases. But this much is certain already: The ruling -- which is said to be a split decision -- is going to cause incalculable grief for local governments for years to come.The immediate mischief of the decision will be to energize assorted single-issue, ad hoc anti-tax groups to exert their muscle in the November election in an orgy of Athenian democracy -- the kind wherein citizens gather in the town square, and the side that can shout the loudest wins, and to hell with reason.
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NEWS
By Thomas F. Schaller | February 8, 2011
As I've written before in this space, I'm not an advocate for nickel-and-dime taxation policies. One of the unfortunate consequences of the post-1980 tax revolt triggered by Ronald Reagan's election is that politicians at every level of government, rather than raising income taxes, instead devise inventive, often sneaky ways to generate revenue piecemeal. Parking meters, speed cameras, car registration fees, snack taxes, levies on cable television and other forms of communication and entertainment, not to mention the so-called sin taxes on alcohol and tobacco — these are the byproducts of the anti-tax movement that has grown so powerful, even President Barack Obama caved to its pressure by extending the Bush-era income tax policies.
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NEWS
By Samuel Goldreich and Samuel Goldreich,Staff writer | May 19, 1991
Nobody has declared the Anne Arundel tax revolt dead, but it has shown few signs of life during County Council deliberations on the proposed fiscal 1992 budget.Only three citizens bothered to complain Thursday night at a council hearing on County Executive Robert R. Neall's proposal to keep the property tax rate at $2.46 per $100 of assessed value.That rate would still be among the lowest in the Baltimore region. But as assessments have risen, it is 19 cents higher than the elusive constant yield, the rate that would produce the same revenue as this year, exclusive of new construction.
NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,SUN STAFF | July 31, 2005
When William "Billy" Kerr and his wife, Kerri, bought their 80-year-old bungalow on Anneslie Road near Towson this spring, property taxes were not a major concern. "When you're sitting there at the closing table, you don't question details," Billy Kerr said. Compared with the $356,500 price of their home - nearly double its last sale price in 1998 - the local taxes seemed "a relatively small amount." But that was before the Kerrs learned they owed Baltimore County $3,038.94 in taxes, while their next-door neighbors, Daniel and Mary "Grace" Bigelow, had a tax bill for $1,968.
NEWS
By Samuel Goldreich and Samuel Goldreich,Staff writer | May 2, 1991
County Executive Robert R. Neall proposed cutting the budget for thefirst time in charter history yesterday and struck a truce with AnneArundel tax revolt leaders.Despite a recessionary projection that revenue will drop $6.4 million next year, Neall proposed a $616.6 million operating budget that is down only $800,000 from fiscal year 1991, which ends June 30.* See related stories Page 4Neall, a Republican known for hisrecord of slashing budgets in the House of Delegates, won praise forpreserving education, public safety and social services and expanding environmental protection without raising taxes.
NEWS
By Lyle Denniston and Lyle Denniston,Washington BureauWashington Bureau | June 19, 1992
WASHINGTON -- Moving dramatically to try to take race out of U.S. criminal trials, the Supreme Court yesterday barred defense lawyers from picking jurors on the basis of their race -- even if that would get a more favorable jury for the accused.The 7-2 ruling is likely to mean that more whites accused of crimes against blacks will have to take their chances with more blacks on the jury and that more blacks accused of crimes against whites will be tried by all-white juries.The justices, in another major ruling, upheld 8-1 a key part of California's unique 1978 "tax revolt" law, which holds down property taxes on homes long owned by the same family or individual, but allows taxes to rise sharply when a new owner buys a home.
NEWS
By Ian Johnson and Ian Johnson,SUN FOREIGN STAFF | November 11, 1996
YULIN, China -- The final straw for many villagers in this region came in the early summer, when local officials demanded the equivalent of $10,000 in taxes for a new irrigation system.The village in north-central Shaanxi Province had already been assessed a one-time irrigation tax of $25,000, so no one could figure out how officials could need more money so soon. The answer quickly leaked out: Nearly half the original levy had been squandered by corrupt bureaucrats on banquets and junkets.
NEWS
October 2, 1990
Dennis Rasmussen did the right and courageous thing by publicly revealing his private opposition to tax cap proposal. The 2 percent tax ceiling panders to a bumper sticker mentality; the reality is that the county would lose more than $20 million the first year alone. Despite the claims of the tax rebels, no executive can run a government, however efficiently, under such fiscal fetters and still provide the level of services residents have received -- and still expect.Now that Rasmussen has taken a stand publicly, all four candidates for county executive in Anne Arundel and Baltimore counties, where referendums are pending, are officially opposed to the caps.
NEWS
By James M. Coram and James M. Coram,Staff writer | March 13, 1991
The dilemma facing County Executive Charles I. Ecker was aptly summed up Monday by the next to last speaker at the second night of budgethearings at Mount Hebron High School:"What level of services do people want? And are people prepared to pay that level?"Builder Al Trellis told Ecker those questions are the real issue behind the "cheap shots" Ecker has been taking during the hearings: shots at his $80,000 annual salary, his $30,000 in disputed school system pension benefits and his hiring of three aides at salaries of $80,000, $60,000 and $41,000.
NEWS
By RICHARD REEVES | July 7, 1993
Los Angeles -- They always thought it would be an earthquake along the San Andreas Fault that would break up California. But it may turn out that it was Proposition 13, the 1978 tax revolt initiative that cut and capped property taxes for the people who got here first.Last month, for the seventh year in a row, the state missed its deadline for producing a budget in a struggle over who should go broke first, California's local governments or the state itself.The frustrations and internal strains hereabouts are so great that the State Assembly voted earlier this month to break up the state into three new ones -- a big-bang political explosion.
TOPIC
By Colman McCarthy | March 19, 2000
ADULT Roman Catholics with sharp memories can recall the priests and nuns of their childhood offering advice on confessing sins -- "going into the box," as the phrase went. Be specific, be contrite, and promise to sin no more. Of those three standards for true repentance, Pope John Paul II, in his March 12 plea for divine forgiveness for sins committed by his church during the past 2,000 years, met only one. He was contrite. On specific sins, the pope offered the incense of smoky generalities.
NEWS
By Paul West and Paul West,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | October 31, 1997
VIENNA, Va. -- As Jim Gilmore marched in the Halloween parade of this Northern Virginia suburb, an attractive blonde in a sheepskin jacket scampered into the street and embraced the Republican gubernatorial candidate."
NEWS
By Ian Johnson and Ian Johnson,SUN FOREIGN STAFF | November 11, 1996
YULIN, China -- The final straw for many villagers in this region came in the early summer, when local officials demanded the equivalent of $10,000 in taxes for a new irrigation system.The village in north-central Shaanxi Province had already been assessed a one-time irrigation tax of $25,000, so no one could figure out how officials could need more money so soon. The answer quickly leaked out: Nearly half the original levy had been squandered by corrupt bureaucrats on banquets and junkets.
NEWS
By KNIGHT-RIDDER NEWS SERVICE | September 8, 1996
KITTANNING, Pa. - It is a ragged house on a hillside and its owner, a cook who supports his family on $4.75 an hour, doesn't understand why the county wants to nearly double his property taxes at a time when millions of Americans can't spare even a few bucks.So Terry Stouffer's home has become a flashpoint of "revolution" in Armstrong County, where a new citizens' group is battling local government over a countywide property reassessment that will send taxes soaring just when lucrative manufacturing jobs are diminishing.
NEWS
By CHARLES C. EUCHNER | April 17, 1994
Demetrio Rodriguez, meet Howard Jarvis.The late Howard Jarvis was the force behind the property-tax revolt that resulted in the passage of California's Proposition 13 referendum. That initiative led to other states' efforts to cut taxes and, eventually, to Ronald Reagan's assault on the federal tax system.Demetrio Rodriguez was the lead plaintiff in a Texas case that challenged his state's system of unequal school funding. The U.S. Supreme Court in 1973 rejected Mr. Rodriguez's claim that some kind of equity in school funding was a constitutional right.
NEWS
By RICHARD REEVES | July 7, 1993
Los Angeles -- They always thought it would be an earthquake along the San Andreas Fault that would break up California. But it may turn out that it was Proposition 13, the 1978 tax revolt initiative that cut and capped property taxes for the people who got here first.Last month, for the seventh year in a row, the state missed its deadline for producing a budget in a struggle over who should go broke first, California's local governments or the state itself.The frustrations and internal strains hereabouts are so great that the State Assembly voted earlier this month to break up the state into three new ones -- a big-bang political explosion.
NEWS
By RICHARD REEVES | October 21, 1991
Los Angeles -- Once again there is political revolution in the warm and yeasty air of California, a new rising that will create a politics of new faces and no parties -- or of too many parties. It could be called citizen politics: It is a revolt of citizens against politicians, a class war as the politicians of this great state-nation are more and more seen as a separate class serving only their own interests.It might also be called chaos.Whatever it becomes, the new California politics will change all American politics by the end of the century.
NEWS
By Richard O'Mara and Richard O'Mara,London Bureau of The Sun | August 16, 1991
GLASGOW, Scotland -- John Mullin wears the gloomy look of a man desperate to find the bright side of a dark situation.He sits behind the gray stone walls of Strathclyde House in the center of Glasgow and wonders how he's going to deal with the consequences of the tax revolt outside.It's happening all across Britain. But in Scotland it is more bitter because it is fueled by nationalistic sentiment.Until recently, it had the open support of the Scottish National Party, which claims 20 percent of Scotland's voters.
NEWS
By Lyle Denniston and Lyle Denniston,Washington BureauWashington Bureau | June 19, 1992
WASHINGTON -- Moving dramatically to try to take race out of U.S. criminal trials, the Supreme Court yesterday barred defense lawyers from picking jurors on the basis of their race -- even if that would get a more favorable jury for the accused.The 7-2 ruling is likely to mean that more whites accused of crimes against blacks will have to take their chances with more blacks on the jury and that more blacks accused of crimes against whites will be tried by all-white juries.The justices, in another major ruling, upheld 8-1 a key part of California's unique 1978 "tax revolt" law, which holds down property taxes on homes long owned by the same family or individual, but allows taxes to rise sharply when a new owner buys a home.
NEWS
By RICHARD REEVES | October 21, 1991
Los Angeles -- Once again there is political revolution in the warm and yeasty air of California, a new rising that will create a politics of new faces and no parties -- or of too many parties. It could be called citizen politics: It is a revolt of citizens against politicians, a class war as the politicians of this great state-nation are more and more seen as a separate class serving only their own interests.It might also be called chaos.Whatever it becomes, the new California politics will change all American politics by the end of the century.
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