Skip to comments.After the Retail Apocalypse, Prepare for the Property Tax Meltdown
Posted on 11/16/2018 4:48:13 PM PST by Zhang Fei
WEST BEND, WIKraig Sadownikow doesnt look like an anti-corporate crusader. The mayor of West Bend, Wisconsin, stickers his pickup with a Dont Tread on Me snake on the back window, a GOP elephant on the hitch, and the stars-and-stripes logo of his construction company across the bumper.
His fiscal conservatism is equally well billboarded: In the two hours we spent at City Hall and cruising West Bend in his plush truck, Sadownikow twice mentioned the 6 percent he has shaved off the Wisconsin citys operating budget since becoming mayor in 2011, and stressed its efforts to bring more business to town.
So you might be surprised to learn that Sadownikow (he instructed me to pronounce his name like sat-on-a-cow) is personally boycotting two of the biggest big-box retailers in his town, Walmart and Menards, the Midwestern home improvement chain. Hes avoiding shopping at these companies stores until they cease what he sees as a flagrant exploitation of West Bends property tax system: repeat tax appeals that, added up, could undermine the towns hard-won fiscal health.
Sadownikow is one of many unlikely combatants who have lined up against dark store theory. Thats the ominous-sounding term that administrators have given to a head-spinning legal argument taking cities across the U.S. by storm. Big-box retailers such as Walmart, Target, Meijer, Menards, and others are trimming their expenses in a forum where few residents are looking: the property tax assessment process. With one property tax appeal after another, they are compelling small-town assessors and high-court judges to accept the novel argument that their bustling big boxes should be valued like vacant dark storesi.e., the near-worthless properties now peppering Americas shopping plazas.
To hear it from opponents, this emerging legal phenomenon essentially weaponizes an already grim retail landscape. But its not always clear whos right
(Excerpt) Read more at citylab.com ...
I love it
No American or business should pay property taxes
Its unfair, they use “assessments” which is the highest possible price for a property
I always stated what is it really worth if every home in the town is for sale? Nothing or very little
If you have to send money to someone and if you don’t they can take your property, you are renting it, you don’t own it.
Our property taxes have doubled in the 4 years since I retired. We are not eligible for any breaks on them since we planned for retirement, but once the state breaks us we might be.
If there's a shopping center in my town that's being assessed as if it's vacant, then I'm perfectly happy to have the town seize the property even just to bulldoze the whole thing to the ground and turn it into a vacant lot.
[If the assessed value of the property is the same as a “dark store,” then the town could seize the property and pay very little money for it.]
“...even just to bulldoze the whole thing to the ground and turn it into a vacant lot.”
Uhhh...demolition and disposal of the construction debris is VERY expensive.
Unless the naked dirt is worth at least THREE times what you paid for the property, DON’T even think about it; it’s a losing proposition.
an no subsidies for us either... not poor enough.....yet....
Why don’t you move? Unless your taxes were ridiculously low or the increase was offset in some way, you are getting screwed.
Believe me, we have been seriously researching it. We were both born and raised here. Our families live here including my elderly parents who need our help, but our beautiful state has been invaded by people who came from other places who are ruining this area and vote for socialist politicians and policies. Not to mention that they throw garbage everywhere.
We are now paying over $12,000 a year in property taxes alone and it is going up again next year. I am working every day to get the house we are living in sold by next Spring.
$12,000 annually for taxes is high for sure. I had a really nice home in a gated community in NJ, one of highest taxed States in America. Home was located on the golf course (18 holes) and my taxes were just over $5000. Home was 2800 sq ft.
I don’t wish to be intrusive but can you tell us what State you live in?
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