Paul L. Caron
Dean


Monday, April 8, 2013

Who'll Tax the Rain? Maryland

Maryland Gazette:  The ‘Rain Tax’:

if you thought they ran out of ways to tax us you badly misjudged our lawmakers’ creativity. Get ready for their newest invention, the rain tax. Here’s what’s going on:

In 2010 the Obama administration’s Environmental Protection Agency ordered Maryland to reduce stormwater runoff into the Chesapeake Bay so that nitrogen levels fall 22 percent and phosphorus falls 15 percent from current amounts. The price tag: $14.8 billion.

And where do we get the $14.8 billion? By taxing so-called “impervious surfaces,” anything that prevents rain water from seeping into the earth (roofs, driveways, patios, sidewalks, etc.) thereby causing stormwater run off. In other words, a rain tax.

Faced with the EPA’s orders, the state has required its 10 largest counties — Montgomery, Prince George’s, Howard, Anne Arundel, Carroll, Harford, Charles, Frederick, Baltimore counties and Baltimore city — to raise the revenue. Rain taxes are to take effect in these areas by July 1.

Celine Dion, Rain, Tax (It's Inevitable):

Like rain, tax
After lightning the thunder cracks
(It's inevitable)
Sooner or later it had to come true
Like rain, tax
Weeds grow up through the pavement cracks
(It's inevitable)
You see what I want
What I want is you

 

I also like Fark's headline: "Residents Wonder What Precipitated the Decision"

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2013/04/wholl-tax.html

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Comments

Conceptually, this seems like a perfectly reasonable way to charge people for certain environmental costs. I'd rather have this than a general increase in income and sales taxes.

Posted by: HTA | Apr 8, 2013 1:55:17 PM

My county taxes me for rain that it claims runs off of my property, but I can prove there is almost no rain on my yard by the brown grass and plants that die. Also, rainfall doesn't run off but fills up my septic line and tank. I think I should get a tax credit, instead. This isn't a real environmental issue. It's just another excuse for government to seize money from citizens -- just like carbon taxes.

Posted by: Woody | Apr 9, 2013 7:08:16 AM