This is actually a pretty good story delving into a much talked about and complicated subject. Tax exemptions.
However, the premise here seems to be exemptions are not nettlesome to taxpayers. We don't know as these exemptions have been in place so long, there impact cannot be judged. Besides if I am a parishioner of St. Pat's , do I want them to pay taxes ? Likely not. How about senior exemptions and veteran's exemptions.
There are so many people who get a direct or tangential benefit, the subject of exemptions is hard to even discuss in a theoretical sense
What is dubious across the board of society is the notion that any property should be exempt from the property tax....a tax purportedly funding the nuts and bolts services related to the existence of property.
Then there are the anomalies. For instance, as long as the city water plant is in the city limits it is exempt, but if it were just outside , its taxable. Same plant, same customers and mission.
Hospitals serve a public benefit but are largely a business with high paid executives and the need to make tough decisions based on the bottom line.
NFP's are all over the map as far as public benefit. Churches ?
Then come the PILOT's which are really an exemption outside of statutory approval, or the property swaps to avoid taxes. Those pose moral dilemmas, but as long as they are cloaked in the jobs mantra, they continue.
But like I said. I enjoyed reading the article.
Watertown Daily Times | Tax exemption less burdensome in Jefferson County; PILOTs not seen as problematic for local rates