Comment 28502

By A Smith (anonymous) | Posted February 07, 2009 at 11:19:58

JonC >> Comparing residential to commercial rates is a false debate

I am not comparing commercial rates to residential rates. I am comparing Toronto's residential rates with Hamilton's residential rates. Apples to apples.

>> continuing on the same debate after the numbers proving your point wrong is ridiculous

What numbers? Are you referring to the lower vacancy commercial tax rates? Like I said before, if you want to get rid of the lower rates for vacant buildings that would be fine. However, if your point is that people buy commercial buildings, simply with the goal of having them sit vacant is ridiculous. Investors like generating a positive return on their equity, so having their asset sit empty is the last thing they want. Buildings sit vacant either because the politicians lead investors to believe they will get a bail out and/or there is simply not enough demand coming from the market.

>> Comparing rates heads up is also not accurate as the city of Toronto has implemented numerous taxes that affect users on a usage basis that the city of Hamilton has chosen not to implement

What taxes in particular? Furthermore, do they add up to thousands a year? More details please. If you are referring to the land transfer tax, then you are making my point for me. Sales and home values have dropped in Toronto, relative to surrounding communities, since that tax was brought in.

>> I will be ignoring your future comments as you don't appear to care to engage in a legitimate debate

Tell me where I have distorted the truth. All my numbers are correct, as were yours. Only in my reasoning do you take issue. That's okay, but lets not stop debating just because we don't agree. I have already said your point about reduced rates for vacant buildings was something I hadn't though of before, so we all can learn from each others view on things.

Jason >> I agree with would be nice to have the odd discussion on RTH not turn into the same stupid thing time and time again. We get it.

Obviously you don't get it, because if you did, you wouldn't be discussing where to build taxpayer funded white elephants. Haven't you learned anything from Hamilton's love affair with grand projects? Why not look to locales that actually are doing better than we are, such as Halton, Peel, Toronto (less so in recent history), instead of looking to politicians to turn things around?

What Hamilton truly needs is people with disposable income and businesses who want to invest and create jobs. The best way to bring that about is to lower the tax rate on properties, both residential and commercial. By doing this, you would be leaving the residents of Hamilton with more money in their pocket, which they would spend at local establishments, increasing the amount of jobs in the city and decreasing the amount of vacant buildings.

Unfortunately, the method favoured by most on this site is to create big, expensive, yet highly visible projects, that politicians can have their picture taken beside. However, we have all seen this movie before and it never has a happy ending. Why not try something different this time and lower our tax rates to the same level or lower than our richer more prosperous neighbours. If it doesn't produce positive results over a five year time frame, then you will have proof to show to any other free market thinker like myself who claims it will work. As it stands today, all the experiments have been big government solutions and we still are one of the poorest communities in Canada.

If you keep doing the same thing over again (big government, taxpayer funded projects), why do you expect different results.

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