Comment 30547

By A Smith (anonymous) | Posted April 27, 2009 at 17:16:50

Arby, From the RBG annual report 2007...

Royal Botanical Gardens is funded by the people of
Ontario through Ontario Ministry of Culture, City of
Hamilton, Regional Municipality of Halton, Royal
Botanical Gardens members, The Auxiliary of Royal
Botanical Gardens, and many corporations, foundations
and individuals.

In other words, without the government paying their bills, they would not exist. Therefore, they are "owned" by the government.

Ryan, If this land was owned by the private sector, empty bottles would not be allowed to accumulate like this scene. Furthermore, if this land was sold off to the private sector, the government would actually collect taxes on it. Instead, we have land that is abused by people who don't value it and a government that has no clue how to control it. Assuming the city won't sell this land off, perhaps a good start would be to charge visitors a small fee to enjoy Princess Point. This would help cover the costs of keeping it clean and would filter out the people who don't value it as a natural attraction.

As for lowering tax rates, it stimulated private investment in Boston and Portland and it would do the same here as well. Keep in mind that low tax rates doesn't mean low taxes, just that the government collects a smaller percentage of the overall economy. After enacting Prop 2 1/2, Boston's government saw its assessment base go from 147.67B to 991.7B an average increase of 8.6%, while revenues to the government went from 3.13B in 1985 to 10.99B in 2008, an average increase of 5.6%.

In Hamilton, where there is no cap on spending, tax revenues to the government increased an average of 4.74% from 2002 to 2008. In Boston, in this same time period, tax revenues went up an average of 5.4%. However, residential tax rates in Boston went down from 1.41% to 1.11% from 2002 to 2008, while they only dropped from 1.83% in 2002 to 1.645% in 2008.

Therefore, in the case of Boston, tax rates dropped by 21.3%, yet tax revenues went up by 37.3%. In Hamilton, tax rates dropped by 10.1%, but revenue only went up by 32.1%. If you use the residential tax rate and the tax levy you can also get a rough idea of the assessment growth. In the case of Hamilton, from 2002 to 2008, assessment growth was 46.8%. In the case of Boston, where spending is capped, assessment increased 74.1%, 58% higher than high taxed Hamilton.

That higher assessment growth (74.1% for Boston vs 46.8% for Hamilton) is why lower tax rates actually increase revenue to city coffers, rather than depletes it. By promoting much larger amounts of investment and demand for city properties, lower tax rates help everyone, both public and private interests.

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