North Dakota Fails to Halt Property Taxes

UPDATED June 14, 2012

In case you missed it, North Dakota voters rejected an effort to eliminate property taxes at the polls earlier this week. 

Stateline has this:

North Dakota voters shied away from several controversies at the polls Tuesday (June 13), including bids to eliminate property taxes, to prevent the University of North Dakota from dropping its “Fighting Sioux” nickname and to strengthen protections for people who claim government actions violate their religious beliefs.


As Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Bullock seeks to offer a one-time $400 property tax rebate, the State of North Dakota is voting to decide whether they will get rid of property taxes altogether. 

Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Hill called Bullock’s proposal a “one-time gimmick” according to Marnee Banks with KXLH-TV.  Banks added:

Hill says that by using the state share of the oil and gas revenues along with the lease and royalty income from Otter Creek coal development, the state can provide approximately $200 million of tax relief per biennium on a permanent basis.

Now, on to North Dakota.  I first shared this Wall Street Journal story Monday morning on our statewide talk show, and meant to post a note on the blog.  In the meantime, The New York Times, Drudge Report, and several other national outlets are now picking up on the story out of North Dakota.

Given the influx of oil dollars and other associated economic development, North Dakota is considering an effort to do away with property taxes altogether.   

From the WSJ:

An energy boom has flooded North Dakota’s coffers at a time when almost every other state is struggling to make ends meet. But when its fiscally conservative residents get the chance Tuesday to vote themselves a big tax cut, they are expected to say “no.”

At issue is a referendum for a proposed constitutional amendment to eliminate local property taxes, requiring the newly flush state government to make up the difference. Proponents, a loose group that includes people ranging from progressives to tea-party members, say the state can afford it, thanks to as much as $3 billion in expected revenue from taxes on oil and natural-gas production in the current and next fiscal years. They also cite sales-tax revenue that has jumped 86% from two years ago because of an influx of new residents and businesses.

From The New York Times:

“I would like to be able to know that my home, no matter what happens to my income or my life, is not going to be taken away from me because I can’t pay a tax,” said Susan Beehler, one in a group of North Dakotans who have pressed for an amendment to the state’s Constitution to end the property tax.

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