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Old 04-13-14, 07:05 AM   #1
spinnaker
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Why do taxes differ so much between counties / parishes?

As some of you know I have been looking for a new house. What I already knew but just recently has become much more apparent of because of my search is the difference in taxes between counties.

Why do taxes differ so much between counties / parishes? The county where I live, the taxes are pretty expensive. It is pretty populous and we do have more services and amenities than surrounding counties counties. But we have a lot more people to pay for them.

Also it is not the county tax that is expensive but the school taxes. Seems to me that the less populous counties would have very high school tax since there are less people to pay for the schools. How can they offer similar services so cheaply?


Which brings up a related question. Are there any communities in the United States that have no school so therefore no school tax? Seems to me that some of these huge retirement communities could work things out so they did not have to pay a school tax.
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Old 04-13-14, 09:16 AM   #2
prathmann
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post

Also it is not the county tax that is expensive but the school taxes. Seems to me that the less populous counties would have very high school tax since there are less people to pay for the schools. How can they offer similar services so cheaply?
But they probably also have far fewer children to educate, especially if much of the population is older and no longer had school-age kids. Another consideration is what other contributors there are to the county tax rolls. E.g. if there are some big companies or other high-value property that might be providing much of the needed tax revenue then the rate can be set lower for home owners there and still have enough money to pay for schools and other services. OTOH, sometimes counties give tax incentives to companies to locate there so the other residents don't see such benefits - at least initially.
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Old 04-13-14, 10:27 AM   #3
jdon
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Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
As some of you know I have been looking for a new house. What I already knew but just recently has become much more apparent of because of my search is the difference in taxes between counties.

Why do taxes differ so much between counties / parishes? The county where I live, the taxes are pretty expensive. It is pretty populous and we do have more services and amenities than surrounding counties counties. But we have a lot more people to pay for them.

Also it is not the county tax that is expensive but the school taxes. Seems to me that the less populous counties would have very high school tax since there are less people to pay for the schools. How can they offer similar services so cheaply?


Which brings up a related question. Are there any communities in the United States that have no school so therefore no school tax? Seems to me that some of these huge retirement communities could work things out so they did not have to pay a school tax.
School taxes are the bane of those without children. If you went to a public school, you were educated with other peoples money. If you have children in public school, same. The public school system requires participation from a broad tax base to work. If you charged individually for those with kids, you would have a nation of uneducated. School tax is just one of those hotly debated but constant necessities.
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