News & Updates - Broad-Based Coalition Ready to Fight Billion-Dollar Split-Roll Tax Increase Initiative in 2020

Despite a $17 billion reserve, special interests seek an $11 billion property tax increase

August 14, 2018

CONTACT: Brooke Armour
(916) 553-4093

(SACRAMENTO)— A broad-based coalition of business and taxpayer advocates today announced they are already organizing to fight against the multi-billion-dollar split-roll property tax increase, which may appear on the November 2020 ballot.

“California currently has a more than $17 billion budget reserve. State and local governments are taking in record revenue. And yet somehow both the state and local governments are facing significant deficits in the near future. Hardworking Californians have seen their tax burden increase, including from the state’s gas tax increase last year. In the past eight years, local governments have enacted more than 800 general and special taxes,” said Rob Lapsley, president of the California Business Roundtable and part of the coalition formed to fight the measure.

Property tax revenue continues to skyrocket. In 2017, businesses and residents paid $65 billion in property taxes. Since Prop. 13 passed in 1978, property tax revenue has increased more than 1,000 percent from $6 billion to $65 billion. In just the past 10 years, it has increased nearly 40 percent. Even with Prop. 13, the state has seen property taxes grow at a faster rate than personal income since 1979.

“This is yet another attack on the longstanding taxpayer protections in Prop. 13. Special interests continue to push for new and higher taxes to pay for their out-of-control pensions, which have already directed existing tax revenue away from classrooms and other state priorities,” said Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. “While the election may be more than two years away, we have already begun to build the campaign necessary to defeat this measure and preserve the taxpayer protections in Prop. 13.”

Even the nonpartisan legislative analyst cautioned that this measure will increase the costs on businesses, which could force some to change hiring practices or move out-of-state.

“California already has the worst climate for business and job creation in the country. A split-roll property tax will just increase pressure on many businesses that are already finding it hard to make ends meet,” concluded Rex Hime, president of the California Business Properties Association.

The broad-based coalition includes the California Chamber of Commerce, California Taxpayers Association, California Business Roundtable, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, California Business Properties Association and a growing list of regional and local business and taxpayer advocates.

Split-roll proponents today began turning it signatures to qualify the measure for November 2020.

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