Letter: Hike in Vail taxes is unaffordable
Vail CO, Colorado
Eagle County and its towns have been crying about the lack of affordable housing when, in fact, they are partly responsible for the situation.
For example, we own a duplex in East Vail and rent one side to a Vail town employee. Our assessed property value this year increased 86 percent, resulting in a tax increase of 80 percent. It will be necessary to raise the rent of the unit 50 to 60 percent to recover these costs. So by a stroke of the assessor’s pen, the unit went from affordable to non-affordable. Another issue is how such a large and sudden tax increase impacts our fixed retirement income in our lived-in unit.
As an example of how arbitrary the assessment process is, the value of one side of the duplex was increased 110 percent and the other 86 percent despite both sides being about equal. My protest brought the one side back down to 86 percent. Oh boy! The Bruce Amendment was specifically designed to prevent this type of gouging by state and local taxing entities. The amendment has some flaws, but to arbitrarily “de-bruce” these taxing units, we are asking for trouble.
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