The realtors and homebuilders are at it again

The realtors and homebuilders are at it again, getting numerous bills introduced that would exempt them from property taxes, eliminate a counties' ability to try to levy a land transfer tax, and keep counties from exercising basic land-use planning tools. Here are some of the highlights (or lowlights) of some of their proposed bills:

H852 - DEFER TAX ON BUILDERS' INVENTORY. This bill would mean that if a homebuilder puts up a home and it doesn't sell, he/she would only have to pay property taxes based on the value of the land and not the improvements (i.e. the house) made to the land.

S117 - CLARIFYING DEVELOPMENT MORATORIA AUTHORITY. This bill keeps a county from instituting a building moratoria while it develops or revises a development ordinance, such as an Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance.

S447 - NO MONETARY EXACTION FOR DEVELOPMENT. This bill takes S117 a step further and just repeals a city or county's ability to adopt an adequate public facilities ordinance. Some locales use APFOs as a way to get developers to help pay for the infrastructure needs they are creating when they open a new development.

S915 - REPEAL COUNTY LAND TRANSFER TAX. This bill would revoke a county's ability to hold a referendum on a 0.4 percent and transfer tax.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of sympathy in the General Assembly now for some of the homebuilders in particular who have been hit hard by the economic meltdown, so I think there is a good chance that some of this stuff could actually pass this year. All of these ideas were put out last session but didn't go any where. Actually, the Senate did pass a bill repealing the Land Transfer Tax and the Monetary Exaction for Development, but the House failed to act both times.

Comments

realtors

The realtors are gonna get mad because you didn't capitalize their name and give them a registered trademark symbol.

Tsk. Tsk.

S447

"Some locales use APFOs as a way to get developers to help pay for the infrastructure needs they are creating when they open a new development."

Why don't they just force the developers to pay for it to begin with by *gasp* not using tax dollars to contribute to urban sprawl?

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"The natural wage of labor is its product." -- Benjamin R. Tucker
A liberal is someone who thinks the system is broken and needs to be fixed, whereas a radical understands it’s working the way it’s supposed to.

Say again?

Not sure what you mean here, unless you're one of those people who are fundamentally against planning. APFOs are first and foremost a planning tool that helps ensure that development doesn't get too far ahead of carrying capacity.

What I meant

Aside from the issue of planning, my question is how or why local governments would be forced to pay for the infrastructure needs of a new development? As in, is there some law forcing them to? Why can't they just "force" the developer to pay for it by refusing to do so themselves?

As to the planning question, no, I'm not fundamentally against "planning" per se, but I am against planning via the barrel of a gun.

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"The natural wage of labor is its product." -- Benjamin R. Tucker
A liberal is someone who thinks the system is broken and needs to be fixed, whereas a radical understands it’s working the way it’s supposed to.

You're a lost cause, Dr. Q.

Let's drop it.

Or on second thought, let's see you put your considerable intellect into stopping the War on Drugs. You and I agree about that, though I'm probably more aggressive when it comes to taxing the revenues of drugs on the open market. But still.

Want to work on that one with me? I've brought it up fifty times over the past year. Haven't seen you once jump on the bandwagon.

I'm ready when you are.

Not exactly following the argument here

APFOs do force developers to pay for it up front. They have also been upheld numerous times in various court cases, including an ongoing issue in Union County right now.

Plan should not be a four-letter word for governments!

My take

Some “corrections”

H852 - DEFER TAX ON BUILDERS' INVENTORY. This bill would mean that if a homebuilder puts up a home and it doesn't sell, he/she would only have to pay property taxes based on the value of the land and not the improvements (i.e. the house) made to the land.

H852- ENCOURAGE IRRESPONSIBLE SPEC BUILDING. This bill would encourage more spec building as it decreases the builder’s carrying costs.

S117 - CLARIFYING DEVELOPMENT MORATORIA AUTHORITY. This bill keeps a county from instituting a building moratoria while it develops or revises a development ordinance, such as an Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance.

S117- FURTHER REMOVAL OF LOCAL AUTHORITY FROM LOCAL GOVERNMENT. This bill allows builders to rush to do whatever they want during the months before new development ordinances go in place. Encourages more spec building already facilitated by H852.

S447 - NO MONETARY EXACTION FOR DEVELOPMENT. This bill takes S117 a step further and just repeals a city or county's ability to adopt an adequate public facilities ordinance. Some locales use APFOs as a way to get developers to help pay for the infrastructure needs they are creating when they open a new development.

S447- GROWTH GETS A FREE RIDE. Further clamps down on a local government’s ability to force growth to help pay for itself. Encourages the standard practice of having the existing population bear the majority of infrastructure costs necessitated by new development.

S915 - REPEAL COUNTY LAND TRANSFER TAX. This bill would revoke a county's ability to hold a referendum on a 0.4 percent and transfer tax.

S915- PAID-FOR LEGISLATORS IN RALEIGH KNOW BETTER (EASIER FOR REALTORS AND HOMEBUILDERS TO BUY OFF LEGISLATORS THAN IT IS TO BUY OFF EVERY COUNTY AND MUNICIPAL BOARD). This bill, like others above keeps what should be local decisions away from the local voters and boards and in the hands of paid-for legislators who apparently “know best” what people want.

Scumbags

With all due respect to the many fine individual Realtors and builders out there, when I hear about what their associations do in the legislature, I can't help but think, "Those dirty vote-buying scumbags."

I'd give them at least a hint of credit if they were't so disingenuous with their "we're only trying to provide affordable houssing, etc." arguments and their shameful astroturfing campaigns. Damn they piss me off!