A Tax to Grind | A Blog to Enlighten and Entertain Those Afflicted with Property Tax

Property Taxes Create Dispute in Disputed West Bank

Topic: A Tax to Grind, A Tax to Grind

Thursday, 26 February 2015 by David H. LeVan

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading ... Loading ...

I think we can all agree that calling the West Bank one of the more disputed areas in the world would be an understatement. Well, to further complicate things, there’s a property tax dispute going on in the West Bank. The council of a Jewish settlement in Hebron ruled that a Palestinian citizen must pay 88,200 shekels in property taxes for his property. They claim it is part of their settlement. He claims it’s not part of the settlement and is simply a tactic to have his family removed from the land.

To help create context for this volatile situation, here’s a brief, and admittedly incomplete, history of the West Bank. Jordan formally annexed it in 1950 with the departure of the British, although this annexation was only recognized by Britain and Pakistan. Israel occupied the West Bank and began building settlements in it after winning the Six-Day War of 1967. After decades of disputes, Jordan officially renounced all administrative responsibilities for the West Bank in 1988. Disputes have continued between different groups seeking control over the area, and between those groups and Israel.

The property tax dispute in Hebron has much broader implications than just the tax itself, perhaps starting with who has the right to tax who in the West Bank. I don’t envy whoever has to sort this dispute out.

Weirdest Tax Ever!

Topic: A Tax to Grind, A Tax to Grind

Thursday, 12 February 2015 by David H. LeVan

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading ... Loading ...

Every once in a while I’m researching for interesting property tax stories and issues, I come across some very unusual taxes. Here’s a few but I can’t decide which is the weirdest.

  1. Arkansas’s Tattoo Tax – If you want to get a tattoo, Arkansas is not your best option. You’ll pay a 6% sales tax so make sure it’s a really good tattoo.
  1. Maryland’s Toilet Flushing Tax – Maryland has a $60 tax per year for flushing a toilet. Delaware and Virginia are close by. You may want to consider doing your dirty business in one of those states.
  1. Texas’s Belt Buckle Tax – Cowboy belts and boots may be exempt from tax in the Lone Star State, but not belt buckles. They are subject to a 6.25% sales tax. Might be because they’re the size of Frisbees.
  1. New York’s Bagel Tax – If you want your bagel sliced and heated up, be prepared to pay a sales tax. It’s about 8 cents per bagel. Last time I was there I had one, totally unaware of the extra fee. Next time I might have to consider ordering my bagel unsliced and unheated.

So there you have it, some crazy taxes. Which one do you think gets the most unusual tax award?

Click here to find more weird taxes.

Advantax Bagels

Arrested Property Tax Development

Topic: A Tax to Grind, A Tax to Grind

Thursday, 05 February 2015 by David H. LeVan

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading ... Loading ...

Stealing, assault, battery, reckless driving… They will all land you in jail. But how about paying your property tax bill? Not usually an activity one considers in the list of things that might send you to the pokey. Not unless one is from Wichita Falls, Texas. According to the Times Record News, a Wichita Falls man was arrested while trying to pay his property tax bill using singles.

The man’s property tax bill was $600 and apparently he folded the bills so tightly that it was taking 6 minutes to unfold each single. Not wanting to spend 60 hours unfolding the bills (do the math), the tax assessor asked the man to leave. After he refused he was charged with criminal trespass, and after pulling away from the arresting deputy, he was also charged with resisting arrest. The man’s bail totaled $500.

Several questions come to mind. Just how much of the property tax bill was paid before unfolding the bills became too unbearable? Did the man pay for his bail using the remaining singles? Are you really allowed to ask someone to leave because they are paying their property taxes with tightly waded dollar bills? If it takes 6 minutes to undo a tightly folded dollar, how long did it take to tightly fold it in the first place?

Just in case you were thinking about paying your next property tax bill in tightly waded singles, you might want to reconsider.

 Arrested Property Tax Development