How to avoid a property tax hike next year

How to avoid a property tax hike next year

Did you know the CARES Act only allows state and local governments to spend the money on NEW programs?  Did you also know that Douglas County is the only local government in the entire state that is eligible to receive federal assistance related to the COVID-19 crisis?

This is a problem because the biggest need to our state and local governments is the loss of tax revenue.  No amount of new spending will help our communities overcome this crisis.

That is why the Platte Institute and the North Carolina-based John Locke Foundation are leading a coalition of state policy groups calling on Congress to provide additional financial flexibility for states and local governments in the federal CARES Act relief package.

Platte Institute CEO Jim Vokal submitted the letter to U.S. House and Senate leadership co-signed by think tank leaders in 16 states. A copy of the letter is available here:  Cares Act Coalition Letter.

The motivating factor is the looming property tax increase that will occur all over Nebraska if municipalities do not get the revenue that was lost during this crisis.  Our local governments rely heavily on property and sales tax to fund operating expenses, and without flexibility, they will not be able to use the CARES Act money.

The changes envisioned by the Platte Institute’s letter would allow money from the CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Fund to be used to:

  • Offset lost tax and fee revenue that would otherwise have paid for ordinary operating expenses between March 1 and December 30, 2020, and
  • Provide one-time tax relief to individuals and businesses to revive the local economy.

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