January 21, 2010
The real estate industry is up in arms about an Anne Arundel County decision to collect taxes on certain types of home sales based not on what the buyers paid, but on what the sellers owed on their mortgages as the deal was struck. What's at issue are short sales, which are homes that change hands for less - sometimes far less - than the balance due on the loans. The county policy may be unique in the country, according to the American Land Title Association, which represents companies involved with home sale settlements.
April 20, 2012
Heaven forbid you fall back on your property taxes in Baltimore City and your home goes to the property tax sale! Not only will you pay 18 percent interest on the money, you will pay ever increasing legal fees, and the city will demand that you pay taxes that are not overdue. Then, to top this off, no arrangements can be made. They want all that money to redeem your property at once. There was a story not long ago about bid rigging in this process. Well, the city employees sure know these predatory lawyers pretty well.
April 11, 2012
The General Assembly just voted to double the flush tax. What a joke on us. Remember how the Democrats ridiculed this when Republican Gov.Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. proposed it? Now it's good since Democratic Gov.Martin O'Malley is for it? F. Cordell
January 26, 2012
There's an old joke about "denial" being more than a river in Egypt. Far less amusing is the denial some in Annapolis seem to have about pollution in the Chesapeake Bay and what's required to bring Maryland's sewage treatment plants into compliance with federal regulations. What has lawmakers grousing is Gov.Martin O'Malley's proposal to double the "flush tax" from an average $2.50 to $5 per month. Since the fee is assessed on water consumption, some people (those who use 2,000 gallons per month)
April 9, 2012
Maryland's House of Delegates just passed a bill that doubles the "flush tax" -- a fee on water use -- sending it to Gov. Martin O'Malleyfor his signature. Passing the bill was a key part of the governor's agenda this year. The bill increases the fee from $2.50 per household per month to $5. Funds will be used to upgrade wastewater faciliites. It passed the House 89 to 48. The bill ( HB 446 ) was amended to exclude parts of the state, like Garrett County and parts of the Eastern Shore, that are not part of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
April 23, 2013
The Sun editorial board never fails to agree with every tax and fee our governor thrusts upon the citizens of Maryland ("The rain tax sham," April 18). The governor has created 37 new taxes and fees during his seven years in office, and though he claims to have made cuts in the state budget, the facts show the budget has increased substantially. Rather than ask questions, The Sun prefers to take a few cheap shots at a report done on Fox News, which actually researched the story.
March 7, 2012
I've lived in this beautiful state of Maryland all of my 57 years. Yet, daily I read in The Baltimore Sun that Gov.Martin O'Malleyand his partners, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller and House SpeakerMichael E. Busch, wish to raise taxes and fees that effect all Marylanders. I've read about his proposed increase in sales tax, income tax, gas tax, motor vehicle registration fee, flush tax, and digital download tax (just to name a few). Also, new fees (marine gathering permit fee)
November 15, 2009
Y ou have about six weeks left to make moves to cut your tax bill in the spring. Besides the usual tax strategies, such as making charitable donations before year's-end, you might be able to take advantage of one of the many temporary tax breaks Congress created to stimulate the economy. One of them, the popular first-time homebuyer credit, was recently extended so you have more time to get it. But it's unclear whether others will survive. Congress isn't expected to pass any major tax legislation before year's-end, although it will likely make a short-term fix to the estate tax so it doesn't disappear next year as scheduled.
April 20, 2013
In your April 17 editorial, "The 'Rain Tax' Sham," you take rain tax critics to task for failing to get their facts straight. You write: "That critics can't even accurately describe when the tax was passed should tell you all you need to know about how carefully they've considered the issue. " Yet, elsewhere in the same editorial you state that Maryland's rain tax law "requires Baltimore and the 23 countries to set a fee to pay for such things as storm drains…" In fact, Maryland's rain tax statute applies to Baltimore and only nine counties, not 23. So, by your own standards, doesn't the fact that you can't even accurately describe how many counties are covered by the tax tell us all we need to know about how carefully you have considered the issue?
October 24, 2012
A tax increase on small cigars and other tobacco products popular with teenagers has resulted in a bump in the prices of these products just as health advocates had hoped. The Maryland Health Care for All! Coalition will release a study today showing that prices have increased since the tax went into affect July 1. For instance, a single Swisher Sweets flavored cigar cost $1.29 before the tax and now costs $1.69. A 5-pack of Swisher Sweets cost $5.49 before the tax and now costs $7.99.