Today's Virginian-Pravda has a letter by Mike Barrett on the Virginia Beach Taxpayers Alliance (VBTA) and a push for a homestead exemption http://hamptonroads.com/2008/02/break-wealthy I've sparred with Mike over issues before, and find much of his political agenda absurd. However, he hits on a couple kernels of truth here:
1. Why is it that the VBTA's only housing concern is over landed homeowners? It's the VBTA that was alone in opposing the City's Workforce Housing Program, stating that government had neither a legal nor moral obligation to provide housing for any group. However, that same VBTA thinks a select group should get a tax break on their housing. (Am I the first person to call them on that contradiction?)
2. I'm an apartment dweller. Given that the hometead exemption wouldn't apply to commercial property, my neighbors and I wouldn't get a break. In the 5 years I've been in my building, rent has gone up annually, as Property Tax increases are being passed onto us.
So the VBTA wants a tax break for wealthy landowners...which would be paid for by us po' folk?Typical of the VBTA's self-serving agenda. If you listen to the VBTA, upper middle-class homeowners should be the focus of the government services model.
If you have a household income under $70,000, remember in November that the VBTA and it's candidates (Moss, Hedrick, et al) don't give a damn about you.