Education is necessary not just to live a satisfying and productive life, but also to participate meaningfully as a citizen in our democracy. Vermont is fortunate that its public school financing system provides an adequate, sustainable source of funding and is fairer to both taxpayers and pupils than any other system in the country. Vermont needs to ensure the continued integrity and health of its school funding system and provide a way to make college accessible and affordable to all Vermonters.
It should be obvious by now: You can’t provide property tax relief by raising property taxes. In fact, it should have been obvious long before now.
Yet that is exactly what the Legislature included in Act 46, the school consolidation bill, in 2015. (It then repealed that provision in 2016.)
And that is exactly what the House Education Committee is proposing again this year. The committee voted on Friday to introduce a committee bill (H.509).
This latest attempt at property tax relief would increase taxes for about half of Vermont towns—the half that has the highest property taxes already—and lower taxes for the towns that have the lowest property taxes.
Seriously. I’m not making this up.
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