Property tax unfair to homeowners

Two recent tax increase levies have been strongly rejected. That is, 41 percent in favor and 58 percent against for a utility tax increase for more police officers and a similar defeat for higher property taxes to help maintain fire services.

Those in favor of both, for the most part, will be found to be renting apartments, and those against property owners.

Let’s face it, renters, with the same size families as homeowners, on average, only contribute about one-third of the property tax “revenue” paid by homeowners. Renters do not pay property taxes. They reimburse their landlords for taxes paid by the landlord.

Here is the key: on average, an 800-square-foot apartment generates only about one-third the tax generated by a 2,400-square-foot, single-family residence, yet both families enjoy all the same services provided by the city and county; schools, police, fire, roads, parks, etc. Apartments contribute one-third the revenue of single-family homes but enjoy all the same benefits. This is wrong.

We need to dump property taxes as a means of supporting government and schools and go to a more equal system where each resident living in Kent, King County, etc., pays an equal amount for those services. We all pay the same rates for electricity, gas, water, sewer, etc. Why the disparity on taxes? And to make matters worse, more unfair, the Kent City Council is encouraging more and more apartment developments (500 apartment units on the old par 3 course, where no more than 20 single-family homes would fit, causing even more disparity between taxes paid by single-family homes and apartments).

And, as a final insult, the City Council routinely gives apartment developers a property tax waiver.

– Brent Benson

More in Letters to the Editor

Regional landfill: Building a waste-to-energy plant is a viable option

This is in response to the Sept. 7 Kent Reporter article, “King… Continue reading

Kent schools: Teachers are paid well enough

The base salary for a public school teacher in the Kent School… Continue reading

2018 elections: Dino Rossi owes an apology

The Sept. 7 issue of the Auburn Reporter included a letter by… Continue reading

What do the citizens of Congressional District 8 stand for?

It was disappointing to see Dino Rossi (like Dave Reichert) avoid constituents… Continue reading

’18 election: Rossi more equipped to work in Congress

If you want a strong leader in Congress who is a business… Continue reading

Kent schools: Take care of your heart, your teachers

The heart is the most vital organ. How you treat your heart… Continue reading

Cost of living: Seniors can obtain some tax relief

Gene Bremner, food for thought: I’m a senior in the city limits… Continue reading

Play review: Bravo to theater group’s production of ‘Alma’

I didn’t know about Theatre Battery until last Friday’s Page 1 story… Continue reading

Race for Congress: Schrier is a contradiction

Something has been bothering me. A pediatrician is supposed to be concerned… Continue reading

Cost of living: Seniors being thrown under the bus

More and more senior citizens are taxed out of their homes by… Continue reading

Statistics? Dangerous fireworks prevalent as ever

I read the article “A much quieter Fourth of July in Kent”… Continue reading

Kent dealing with frustrating traffic mess

I was taking 228th Street to go to work. When they closed… Continue reading