Parcel tax Senior exemption Schools & Kids, posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of the Woodside: Emerald Hills neighborhood, on May 1, 2011 at 9:01 am
I have always questioned the use of Senior exemptions for school district parcel tax ballot measures. And, I have suggested to Redwood City Elementary, whose last three parcel tax measures I helped defeat, that they could pass the measures, without vocal opposition, if they provided exemptions for all homeowners without children in RC schools. Clearly, not all eligible for exemptions will file.
Now, in the San Carlos parcel tax election (Measure A), the Senior exemption is getting a new spin from the Daily Post. In a front page note "Find out who doesn't pay the parcel tax", they promise to publish, on Monday morning, the names of 1,081 Seniors who have elected not to pay the existing parcel taxes. They should also state how many decided not to file.
There are 3 voting possibilities for such Seniors: YES, NO and ABSTAIN. I suspect that most of the Seniors on the Post's list will have voted NO. For those Seniors I suggest that they proudly display a lawn sign saying "Don't blame me, I voted NO". Many, who the District is counting on, will have abstained. For those Seniors on the exempt list who voted YES, hang down your head in shame.
Posted by Jack Hickey, a resident of the Woodside: Emerald Hills neighborhood, on May 7, 2011 at 9:43 am
Dear WhoIsHe, Sorry for the confusion.
The "parcel tax" referred to in this discussion is an above the line add on to the 1 % property tax held in tow by Proposition 13. When seeking additional funding using parcel tax ballot measures, School Districts include exemptions for Seniors in the hope that they will not vote against the measure.
As for the voting choices, if one votes YES to support a parcel tax measure, I would expect them to pay the tax should the measure pass. Those Seniors who ABSTAIN or vote NO on the measure can legitimately file for an exemption from the tax.
The issue which prompted my initial submission was the promise by the Daily Post to publish the names of 1,081 Seniors who have elected not to pay the existing parcel taxes. They have subsequently acquiesced to the wishes of readers and decided not to publish the names.
For a glimpse of who I am, I append my recent post to the Redwood City Patch 9:01am on Saturday, May 7, 2011
As a long time opponent of the continued funding of a school system which is,
1. held hostage by powerful unions,
2. encumbered by an archaic education code and a myriad of categorical programs, and;
3. founded on compulsory attendance which has no place in a free country where liberty is cherished,
I must offer alternatives.
My Performance Accountability Voucher for Education (Web Link) is one.
Property tax credits to enable Choice in Education is another.
Posted by POGO, a resident of the Woodside: other neighborhood, on May 7, 2011 at 10:52 am
Jack Hickey has a long history of public service and posts his opinions under his real name. Kudos for that.
Mr. Hickey's point is that it's disingenuous for a "senior" to vote for a parcel tax and then opt out by taking the exemption. It's saying you're in favor of the tax... but I don't feel like paying it.
Parcel tax, like user fee and revenue enhancer, is the new way politicians say "TAX." Government seems to have an insatiable appetite for your money, regardless of who is in power.