Generating New Revenue

By at April 27, 2012 | 8:17 am | Print

Blighted Homes May See a Rise in Taxes

In order to keep property taxes from rising, the mayor’s office said there will be several new plans in place to generate new revenue.

One includes assessing homes and other properties that are blighted differently.

“If your neighbor had a blighted property, they were getting subsidized by you because they got a tax break by driving their property to the ground,” said Phil Sherwood, deputy chief of staff. “The Mayor wants to level the playing field so those properties will get assessed a little more so you don’t have to subsidize them.”

This keeps the mill rate of 36.63 the same and prevents a raise in taxes.

Another way Mayor Tim O’Brien is looking into generating revenue is to charge places that have more than nine emergency calls a year.

“There are a small group of properties that get a high amount of calls,” said Sherwood. “Fifty properties have 100 plus calls a year.”

Properties would not include public buildings like New Britain High School.

“These are residential properties and they are causing a huge drain in resources,” said Sherwood. “It takes the police longer to respond to your call because they are covering these hot spots.”

Sherwood said this does not include calls where someone is suffering chest pains or medical problems in a home.

“This is chronic hot spot areas because of violence, drugs and noise complaints,” he said. “These owners are draining our resources and it is a fairer way to raise revenue.”

Sherwood said the mayor’s office is also looking at other ways to raise revenues without raising taxes.

“Some of the ways we are looking to not raise taxes may not be wildly popular,” Sherwood said. “We have to balance the budget and do not want to raise taxes.”

O’Brien has stated throughout his campaign and time in office that blighted properties would face fines.

Earlier this year he put in place a tougher blight ordinance that calls for fines from $100 a day to $250 a day per violation. For example, if a building has three broken windows, it was fined $100 a day in the past. Now it would be fined $750 a day.

Once the amount owed becomes more than the property is worth, the City can take the property away.


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