Song of the Irate Taxpayer
Roll, roll, roll them back,
Roll my taxes back.
I need a break! Give me a break!
Roll my taxes back!
One can almost envision residents on the two sides of Municipal Court singing a round on Aug. 17 unless there is some really good explanation of why condo buyers at The Monarch should receive a five-year tax abatement when many longtime homeowners are facing economic stress as bad or worse than the developer who is trying to unload the condos.
News of the proposal has sparked lots of comment on blogs, though it has yet to be covered by the print media. Plaintalker broke the story in July and has attempted to add more facts to the discussion, such as the rate at which the condos may be assessed and the corresponding tax break if in fact condo buyers are allowed to pay only 40 percent of taxes.
City Council members have also weighed in with their viewpoints.
The matter will be discussed at Monday's agenda session, 7:30 p.m. in City Hall Library, and will be up for a vote on Aug. 17.
Councilman Adrian Mapp has announced a Thursday town meeting on the topic. Click here for details.
While the success of The Monarch has center stage right now, there are broader concerns for development and economic growth in the city. Councilman Cory Storch's call for a visioning study is one avenue to be pursued. At this point, a public review of the status of all development and redvelopment projects on the books seems to be in order. In addition, the city's workings with Paramount Assets regarding commercial rental space and Connolly Properties regarding residential holdings, both approaching monopolies, must be publicly discussed.
Whether the current administration prevails in November or there is a new one, this assessment is necessary for the future of the city. In the past, handoffs of administrations have been hostile and unproductive. Either way, an objective bottom line must be determined for future success of the city.