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Supervisors vote to place park tax measure on ballot

Posted: August 5, 2014 4:10 p.m.
Updated: August 5, 2014 4:12 p.m.
 

Citing a desire to keep the green going for county park and recreation projects, Los Angeles County supervisors voted Tuesday to put a 30-year “parks tax” on the ballot in November.

If placed on the ballot and passed by voters, the tax of $23 a parcel per year on county properties would begin next year and run for 30 years, according to county documents.

County property owners are already charged park taxes under a pair of items known as Proposition A — one passed in 1992 and the other approved in 1996.

County officials call Proposition A a “tremendous success.” “Hundreds of park, recreation, beach, open space, museum, senior citizen and at-risk youth facilities have been bought, built, renovated and expanded in every area of the county” with Prop A money

The 1992 assessment is scheduled to expire next year, according to the board item.

“I don’t think they (residents) want to see this come to a grinding halt on June 30 of this coming year,” Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky said.

The new tax, if passed by voters, would “give county voters the opportunity to continue taxing themselves for the same amount of money — $53 million per year — for park and recreation purposes,” according to the board agenda item.

But Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich, who voted against the item, said in a written statement that the public was not provided adequate time to review the proposal and described it as an “‘end run’ around the taxpayer’s right to participate in the process.”

“With less than two business days’ notice and with no public outreach, input or discussion, this 30-year tax will add $23 per parcel to property tax bills throughout the county — on top of current parks taxes,” Antonovich said in his written statement.

Antonovich questioned why the new tax would be a flat one, pointing out that the existing Proposition A taxes can vary.

There are also more than $100 million in existing Proposition A funds that have not yet been allocated, according to Antonovich.

“Parks are a vital component to enhancing the quality of life for our county residents,” he said. “However, the voters should not be taxed again until there is a plan to spend all the unallocated revenues and a proposal specifying the need for additional revenue.”

Lmoney@signalscv.com
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Comments

src: Posted: August 5, 2014 7:40 p.m.

Taxifornia.


CastaicClay: Posted: August 5, 2014 9:00 p.m.

Nobody wants more taxes. There has to be a way to keep a tax like this one, if it passes, from ending up in the "general fund". We vote these taxes upon ourselves trying to do the right thing, then the rug gets pulled out from under us and the money collected for a specific purpose is diverted to the general fund. The well has been poisoned and it is going to be a tough sell with what you have done in the past.


missyJk: Posted: August 5, 2014 9:09 p.m.

VOTE NO and only those who get stuck paying it should have a vote if its a flat tax thats means apartment owners will pay the same as me..VOTE NO


lars1: Posted: August 5, 2014 11:05 p.m.

Is this another tax scam that we need to send in our protest forms?
I never received a protest form!
How can they put it up for general election when it only effects property owners?

CastaicClay, the money does not go to the general fund.
It goes directly to the pension benefits fund!


chefgirl358: Posted: August 5, 2014 11:49 p.m.

I love how they always want to screw over specifically property owners, not renters, apartments, etc. Just keep jacking around the middle class. Anyone who votes for this ought to have their head examined.


ricketzz: Posted: August 6, 2014 9:42 a.m.

I'd be more inclined to support parks but we have none to speak of where I live (picnic tables and a basketball court). They should make the Tick Canyon wash a park all the way to Vasquez Rocks (or Davenport at least). Or at least a green belt along the creek. Concrete notches look like crap.

I will vote no.


17trillion: Posted: August 6, 2014 11:09 a.m.

Why has god forsaken me to live in such a hell hole as this state? I hate this place and I hate most of the people that live here.


DMeyer: Posted: August 6, 2014 11:54 a.m.

Property owners need to pay their fair share.


Baddog1: Posted: August 6, 2014 12:17 p.m.

Do people who rent apartments use our local parks?


underwater: Posted: August 6, 2014 1:26 p.m.

@DMeyer. Sounds like you are a typical liberal on the take and hates hard working people. Property owners already pay too much in taxes and what they call "fees".
Just like the comments above, the monies go to other things. The brainwashed like yourself do not see that.


WhollyCow: Posted: August 6, 2014 1:59 p.m.

The problem here is that every voter, regardless of whether they own property or not, gets a vote to raise my taxes. If I were a renter I'd certainly vote yes, why not? I'd be getting usage of a park for no cost.


timothymyers02: Posted: August 6, 2014 6:00 p.m.

ANYONE other than homeless people pay property taxes. If one rents property the landlord incurs the tax and certainly builds any increase in tax into the cost of the rental. ANYONE who thinks otherwise seems like their education ended at about the 6th grade.


chefgirl358: Posted: August 6, 2014 6:53 p.m.

Timothymyers02, guess you're unfamiliar with the working of Section 8 housing.


LosRubios: Posted: August 6, 2014 7:57 p.m.

They should probably convert it to a county 'park fee' and operate it in the same way as the State Fire Tax, er sorry, Fire Fee. Anyone owning property within half a mile of one of the said county parks should pay the fee on the basis that they're most likely to benefit from it as a potential user of the park's facilities while everyone else can save money.


missyJk: Posted: August 9, 2014 4:27 a.m.

PURSUE A LOCAL INITIATIVE TO REDUCE OR REPEAL A PARCEL TAX

In 1996, California voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 218 (known as the "Right to Vote on Taxes Act"), an initiative constitutional amendment sponsored by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. Besides giving voters the constitutional right to vote on local government tax increases, Proposition 218 also included provisions (Section 3 of Article XIIIC of the California Constitution) allowing local voters to use the initiative process to reduce or repeal local government taxes. This includes local parcel taxes.

Under Proposition 218, local tax initiatives are generally subject to a reduced signature gathering requirement which is set at 5% of the local votes for all candidates for Governor at the last gubernatorial election. This number is approximately equal to 3% of the registered voters.

If a local parcel tax passes by a very close margin, or if local taxpayers are otherwise unhappy with an existing parcel tax, then a local tax reduction or repeal initiative can be pursued under the provisions of Proposition 218. Such local initiatives are generally the only tool taxpayers have to reduce the tax burden within their community since it is rare for local elected officials to voluntarily reduce or repeal taxes once they have been imposed.

Local initiative procedures are generally set forth in the California Elections Code. Elections Code sections can be viewed online at the website of the California Legislature at: http://www.legislature.ca.gov. Charter cities often have their own separate procedures for the exercise of the local initiative power.

The proponents of a tax reduction or repeal initiative must follow all procedures applicable to the exercise of the local initiative power without deviation. Failure to follow all procedures can result in a measure not being placed on the ballot, even if a sufficient number of signatures have been obtained. Once placed on the ballot, local tax reduction or repeal initiatives are subject to majority vote approval.

START A LOCAL TAXPAYER ORGANIZATION

As you work, you are likely to find that others are as fed up as you are with out-of-control spending and the little respect most local officials and bureaucrats show for the taxpayer. Consider forming your own local taxpayer group to coordinate efforts in dealing with city councils or county boards of supervisors, as well as school boards and special district governing boards. If you start with only a few members, don't worry. As local tax issues become more prominent, membership will expand.

Support HJTA

Support the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. HJTA is California's foremost taxpayer advocacy organization. HJTA is dedicated to the protection of Proposition 13 and the advancement of taxpayers' rights.


missyJk: Posted: August 9, 2014 4:28 a.m.

PURSUE A LOCAL INITIATIVE TO REDUCE OR REPEAL A PARCEL TAX

In 1996, California voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 218 (known as the "Right to Vote on Taxes Act"), an initiative constitutional amendment sponsored by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. Besides giving voters the constitutional right to vote on local government tax increases, Proposition 218 also included provisions (Section 3 of Article XIIIC of the California Constitution) allowing local voters to use the initiative process to reduce or repeal local government taxes. This includes local parcel taxes.

Under Proposition 218, local tax initiatives are generally subject to a reduced signature gathering requirement which is set at 5% of the local votes for all candidates for Governor at the last gubernatorial election. This number is approximately equal to 3% of the registered voters.

If a local parcel tax passes by a very close margin, or if local taxpayers are otherwise unhappy with an existing parcel tax, then a local tax reduction or repeal initiative can be pursued under the provisions of Proposition 218. Such local initiatives are generally the only tool taxpayers have to reduce the tax burden within their community since it is rare for local elected officials to voluntarily reduce or repeal taxes once they have been imposed.

Local initiative procedures are generally set forth in the California Elections Code. Elections Code sections can be viewed online at the website of the California Legislature at: http://www.legislature.ca.gov. Charter cities often have their own separate procedures for the exercise of the local initiative power.

The proponents of a tax reduction or repeal initiative must follow all procedures applicable to the exercise of the local initiative power without deviation. Failure to follow all procedures can result in a measure not being placed on the ballot, even if a sufficient number of signatures have been obtained. Once placed on the ballot, local tax reduction or repeal initiatives are subject to majority vote approval.

START A LOCAL TAXPAYER ORGANIZATION

As you work, you are likely to find that others are as fed up as you are with out-of-control spending and the little respect most local officials and bureaucrats show for the taxpayer. Consider forming your own local taxpayer group to coordinate efforts in dealing with city councils or county boards of supervisors, as well as school boards and special district governing boards. If you start with only a few members, don't worry. As local tax issues become more prominent, membership will expand.


missyJk: Posted: August 9, 2014 3:11 p.m.

do we have any local taxpayer organizations?



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