Sunday, July 02, 2006

Coyne: Don't tax property

Andrew Coyne has his most recent column online, which has a rather simple suggestion.

Since property taxes are neither simple nor fair, why not just get rid of them? He explains this with some detail here:

Municipalities could make up the difference with user fees and sales tax, he says.

I think he's on to something but it might need some refinement. After all, commercial entities would not be paying sales taxes sufficient to pick up their share -- or at all, if it is a GST-style tax. But at the moment I can't think of a single good reason to keep property taxes in Ontario.


At 11:30 PM, Blogger Mark Dowling said...

Problem is that sales taxes and user fees clobber the poorest strata of society.

I'd like to see some kind of incentivisation against land use, where empty nesters are rewarded for moving to condos and townhouses, freeing up family dwellings for, well, families who would be rebated according to the number of occupants.

At 1:37 PM, Blogger Andrew Spicer said...

Hi Mark,

Fair points.

I'd actually like a municipal income tax. As a side-effect this would further diminish urban sprawl as it would encourage people to live in the municipality in which they work.

As for an improved property tax, I'm not opposed to that... but we are quite far from it today


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