Updated: Apr 15, 2020
“The report, released today, is being hailed as a win for the Schools & Communities First campaign, which says the analysis is proof that opponents’ concerns about the impact on small businesses are unfounded.”
In case you missed it, the University of Southern California (USC) released a report detailing the effects of assessing commercial and industrial properties in California, showing that every county in the state would benefit while primarily affecting only a fraction of those who have overwhelmingly benefited for so long.
“We always knew that opponents of Schools & Communities First would hide behind small businesses to maintain their massive corporate property tax loopholes, but this report nips that scare tactic in the bud – 78% of the revenue would come from the 6% of commercial and industrial properties that have overwhelmingly benefited for years,” said Schools & Communities First Communications Director Alex Stack. “Schools & Communities First has consistently proven to be a reasonable approach to bringing resources back into the community for schools and local services while protecting residential property and small businesses, and this report further validates that.”
This report comes as recent polling has shown the Schools & Communities First initiative to be supported by 58% of likely California voters.
The Schools & Communities First initiative would reclaim $12 billion every year for schools and local communities by closing corporate property tax loopholes, while protecting all residential property and small business property worth $3 million or less. The initiative would also maintain the 1% property tax cap across the board, ensuring businesses in California continue paying some of the lowest property tax rates in the entire country.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
POLITICO Pro California: USC report shows 6 percent of properties would generate bulk of split-roll billions
Only 6 percent of commercial properties facing a potential tax hike would make up the bulk of the projected billions of dollars in new state revenue if the “split-roll” measure is approved by voters in November, according to a report released by the University of Southern California.
The report, released today, is being hailed as a win for the Schools & Communities First campaign, which says the analysis is proof that opponents’ concerns about the impact on small businesses are unfounded.
If approved, the tax measure would bring in between $10.3 billion to $12.6 billion annually, according to the report, with 6 percent of big commercial properties — worth more than $5 million — accounting for 78 percent of total state revenue.
The proposal would untether commercial property from tax protections approved by California voters in 1978 and would tax those properties at market value while exempting small businesses and personal property.
“It clearly shows that a fraction of the top corporations which have overwhelmingly benefited for so many years would finally pay their fair share,” Schools & Communities First spokesperson Alex Stack said of the report.
But critics of the proposal say the report doesn't take into account the impacts on agricultural land owners and on small business owners who are renters.
“This deeply flawed report is merely campaign propaganda,” John Kabateck, California director of the National Federation of Independent Business, said in an email. “Even with these assumptions omitted, this 'report' still makes it clear that the split-roll property tax measure will be the largest tax increase in California history.”