A bill making its way through the Tennessee General Assembly would, if enacted into law, force local government officials to show homeowners exactly how much a property tax increase would take out of their bank accounts.
Americans for Prosperity -Tennessee (AFP-TN) spokesman Grant Henry on Tuesday identified this legislation by two different names: Stop Surprise Taxes or Truth in Advertising.
“It’s like when Nashville raised property taxes last year to around 34 percent. We pushed it last year, but it got stalled in subcommittee. What this would do is anytime a local government, like Nashville, wants to raise property taxes above the certified tax rate, they must send out a detailed notice to every single property owner in the area,” Henry told The Tennessee Star.
“It has to tell you what the current price is and your new price will be when they raise the taxes. Then they must have a public hearing so that anyone who is concerned is able to come voice their opinion. At that hearing, while elected officials are staring all their constituents in the face, they will have to vote it up or vote it down.”
Henry said such a law won’t stop all property tax increases, but it will make elected officials think twice before they vote to raise taxes.
AFP-TN unveiled its 2022 Legislative Agenda on Tuesday. The agenda calls on state legislators to repeal the Professional Privilege Tax, reform the state’s school funding formula to something more student-centered, fund the police through transparent budgets, and end civil asset forfeiture.
Henry said the state’s Professional Privilege Tax charges doctors, attorneys, lobbyists, stockbrokers, and people in the real estate industry, among others, a $400 fee “for the privilege of doing business in Tennessee.”
“It’s the last, dying vestige of the old income tax,” Henry said.
“We think it is time to get rid of it.”
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