Part Three: As Attacks on Proposition 13 And Prop 58 Weaken, Critics Continue on with Split-Roll Tax Effort – Featuring Jon Coupal, CEO, Taxpayer’s Association

Proposition 13 and Proposition 58

Proposition 13 and Proposition 58

Our discussion with Taxpayers Association CEO Jon Coupal continues, focusing on the 1978 California Proposition 13 tax relief benefits for home owners and commercial property owners – and critics of real property tax relief throughout  the state, whose efforts to destroy or water down Proposition 13 and Proposition 58  appear to be faltering, although they continue their efforts nontheless, despite vast popular support of these property tax relief and property transfer tax shelter protections…

Property Tax Transfer: Other than that one example of a wealthy  show business family being able to rent out a secondary property they own, with the ability to keep parents property taxes in CA low, and transfer parents property taxes while avoiding property tax reassessment – is that the only robust example they have that interests the public.

Jon Coupal: Of course. Any other example they have either puts people to sleep or is just based on generalities and disinformation. One wealthy family saves on property taxes and makes a profit by renting out a luxury Malibu home, therefore all wealthy people in California are doing the same thing. And Of course this is largely untrue.

Property Tax Transfer: Absolutely. We couldn’t agree more. Thank you so much Mr. Coupal, for your time with us today. We greatly appreciate it.

Jon Coupal: My pleasure.

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The realtors that Mr. Coupal mentions, that are committed critics of the original 1978 California Proposition 13 and our ability to keep parents property taxes in CA, frequently conduct interviews with California mainstream newspapers and online media. They repeatedly point out that California state and local city government pensions are vastly under-funded… due mainly, they insist, to  the 1978 California Proposition 13 tax shelter.

However, many economists have looked at this, and have stated repeatedly that city municipal workers and state government employees throughout California are actually at a higher overall income rate than equivalent government workers in other states are.

California state and city employee base salary rates, medical benefits, raises and, in particular, pension plans and retirement benefits – are, reportedly, a great deal higher and far more comprehensive than equivalent programs in other states, counties, cities and towns. According to financial researchers, their pension plans are by far the most expensive pension plans in the country.

State budgets consistently surpass state spending records – and the California educational system is now enjoying a 66% increase, reportedly over the next six years. When you peel back the layers, and really examine the facts and statistical data, it seems that public services are inferior in California, not because of the mega popular 1978 Proposition 13 property tax relief benefits for residential and commercial, as well as industrial, property owners. Not because of the ability to keep parents property taxes in CA, or the right to transfer parents property taxes when inheriting property and therefore  inheriting property taxes that go along with it… Not because of property tax transfer or avoiding property tax reassessment during  parent to child transfer, known as parent to child exclusion – but because of political preferences, special interest groups, and over-spending on those interests.

The facts appear to be pointing at apparent cycles of overspending, year after year on specific items such as local government employee salaries and bonuses, generous pensions, retirement perks, and reportedly “very generous” benefits, and other seemingly related areas.

These specific expenditures certainly do seem to be the reason certain popular programs created to help the general public are now severely under-funded. When you look closely at the facts, it certainly does seem that over-spending in certain areas are causing under-spending in other areas.

Part One: As Attacks on Proposition 13 And Prop 58 Weaken, Critics Continue on with Split-Roll Tax Effort – Featuring Jon Coupal, CEO, Taxpayer’s Association

Property Taxes Proposition 13 and 58

Property Taxes Proposition 13 and 58

As we all know, for many years, critics of California Proposition 13 have been blaming property tax relief, the right to avoid property tax reassessment, for overall under-funding of public services…

The critics also blame parent to child transfer of a home and/or land, in other words simple parent to child exclusion from present-day property revaluation, however they mainly place the blame on the  1978 California Proposition 13 property tax relief measure, and the 1986 Proposition 58 property transfer tax shelter, for the under-funding and watering down of critical statewide public services – without any believable data or statistics to back up these accusations.

These claims, largely false and overblown, are still bandied about    in the media by critics, even though they have been debunked and discredited countless times – as the facts repeatedly point, again ad again, at state and local government over-spending on high salaries, reportedly extravagant pensions and benefits, as well as ruinous special-interest construction, building projects, and so forth.

Not, as economists and analysts have said repeatedly, property tax shelters made possible by Prop 13 and Prop 58; which merely benefit offspring when it comes time to transfer parents property taxes when inheriting a home from parents, for example,  and inheriting property taxes… Allowing the family to avoid property tax reassessment, enabling any property tax transfer to be less costly.

All things considered, from an objective standpoint, this is brazen misinformation. In fact, there is a mountain of data revealed in various charts and tables, with arrows pointing up, not down, showing us that total inbound revenue from property taxes has gone up since Prop 13 went into affect in 1978 – not down; despite residential and commercial property owners’ ability to avoid property tax reassessment.

In a recent interview with Mr. Jon Coupal, Chief Executive Officer of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association; with offices in Sacramento and Los Angeles.  Their official motto states that, “When illegal taxes are imposed by state or local governments, our legal organization goes to court to protect your taxpayer rights.”

During our brief interview, Mr. Coupal addressed several current, related issues – beginning with the so-called “2020 Proposition 13 Split-Roll Property Tax measure”; the latest public initiative being promoted throughout California by virulent critics of the original 1978 Proposition 13…

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Property Tax Transfer: Mr. Coupal, thank you so much for taking some time out of your very busy schedule today to speak with us.

Jon Coupal: No problem.

Property Tax Transfer: Can you tell us what you think about the 2020 so-called Split-Roll property tax measure, by coincidence also named Proposition 13, pushed forward by opponents and critics of the original 1978 California Proposition 13 property tax shelter…

Jon Coupal: All of this is confusing, intentionally.  This new  2020 Proposition 13 is more or less tricking voters into thinking that the two   Proposition 13s are related. They’re not. The 2020 Proposition 13 with the Split-Roll Tax is strictly about removing all caps on commercial and industrial properties.

Property Tax Transfer: So how do folks stay on top of all this? How do they figure out what those folks are really up to?

Jon Coupal: This is all designed by opponents of the genuine 1978 Proposition 13 to be confusing and tricky. This is an ongoing educational process for Californians. The new Proposition 13 is not related to the original Proposition 13. What it is, is a $15 Billion bond measure to fund local schools, who must provide matching funds. Plain and simple, this is a tax increase that falls on property owners. Bottom line.

Property Tax Transfer: Yes we can see that. It is very tricky. Jon, what do you believe is our greatest threat?

Jon Coupal: Put simply, your greatest threat is realtors trying to end family property transfers. They would like to destroy inter-generational property transfers. Or they intend to at least limit transfers. The school bond affects the local debt caps… but it’s the realtors – they are the real threat to you.

Property Tax Transfer: A certain group of California realtors…

Jon Coupal: Yes. The media and the realtors will keep pounding away at this; and of course continue to use that one example they have of Lloyd Bridges and his sons renting out that property… to try to convince the public of all the things that are wrong with Prop 13 and property tax transfer. That is the one dramatic example they have to convince people of their point of view. That’s all they have. Nothing else.

Property Tax Transfer: The highly exaggerated, perhaps fictitious real estate crisis…

Jon Coupal: Yes. No matter how many times you ask that’s the only supposedly compelling evidence they have ever come up with to support their argument about their countless rich people  taking advantage of Proposition 13 tax shelter, supposedly renting our thousands of non-primary residences all over California, shrinking tax revenue to the government.  This, of course, is utter nonsense.

(Continued in Part Two…)