Taxpayers Lives Matter

The Truth Concerning Real Estate Taxes

The Property

Below you will see two “tax statements” for a quarter section of irrigated farmland in Dawson County. One is for 2006, the other is for 2015, they show the difference in the Real Estate Taxes collected on this piece of land over a 10 year period. This piece of farmland consists of 128 acres of irrigated crop land, 27 acres of grass, 4.06 acres of roads and 1 acre of home site. While there are 3 older buildings on the property, there has not been a home or house on the land since I have owned it. As you can see by the legal description on the tax statements, this quarter is the SE 1/4 of Section 30, Township 11, and Range 22, all in Dawson County, Nebraska. This particular piece of land would be considered, as far as irrigated land in Dawson County goes, as lower quality farmland. It is low (closer to the water table) and there are spots of alkali. On wet years, it does not produce as good as dry years. The pasture is pasture because its “swampy” and the grass is mostly salt grass. It is not a bad quarter, but to be fair, it is not worth $20,000 an acre land. In describing the land I am not making any references as to how it compares in value or in taxes assessed with any other piece of land, I am only comparing taxes assessed against this particular property over a 10 year period.

As you look at the Tax Statements on this page, you will see that on this piece of farmland, the actual dollars sent in have increased from $2,486.14 in 2006 to $7,768.58 in 2015. That is a 313% increase in ten years. If you look closer, it is even worse than that, because, the State gave a tax credit in 2015 of 509.26. So actually the county taxing entities increased the taxes to 333% over ten years.

Examples:  Tax Statement 2006 – Tax Statement 2015

County Levy

2006 – Levy 0.401078 – Tax $610.90
2015 – Levy 0.324923 – Tax $1,758.61
288% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $6,052,108.42
Total Taxes in 2015 – $10,173,974.77

Fire Cozad #7

2006 – Levy 0.014669 – Tax $22.34
2015 – Levy 0.025654 – Tax $138.85
170% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $214,052.79
Total Taxes 2015 – $214,204.42

RR Trans Safety

2006 – Levy 0.00000 – Tax $00.00
2015 – Levy 0.007500 – Tax $40.59
?% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – ???
Total Taxes 2015 – $234,836.88

Agri. Society

2006 – Levy 0.011189 – Tax $17.04
2015 – Levy 0.008031 – Tax $43.47
256% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $168,837.72
Total Taxes 2015 – $251,463.74

School Cozad

2006 – Levy 1.016864 – Tax $1,548.84
2015 – Levy 0.998913 – Tax $5,406.52
349% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $3,815,552.29
Total Taxes 2015 – $7,864,619.37

ESU #10

2006 – Levy 0.015000 – Tax $22.85
2015 – Levy 0.013754 – Tax $74.44
326% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $218,732.19
Total Taxes 2015 – $398,821.35

Central Community College

2006 – Levy 0.081660 – Tax $124.38
2015 – Levy 0.097228 – Tax $526.24
423% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $1,232,216.42
Total Taxes 2015 – $3,044,372.88

NRD Central Platte

2006 – Levy 0.032095 – Tax $48.89
2015 – Levy 0.0384118 – Tax $207.93
426% increase in taxes collected
Total Taxes 2006 – $484,301.60
Total Taxes 2015 – 1,202,932.38

Total Real Estate Taxes paid in Dawson County

Residential, Commercial and Agricultural

2006 – $27,232,808.00
2015 – $51,291,681.00

Agricultural Only

2006 – $8,722,104.00
2015 – $26,022,269.00

Dawson County Nebraska

Total Agricultural taxes collected over ten years

$141,619,512.00

Total Property collected over ten years

$349,420,240.00

From 2006 through 2015 Dawson County Agricultural land owners have paid in $141,619,512.00 in Real Estate property taxes. The total amount of money collected through all property taxes from 2006 through 2015 in Dawson County, Nebraska is $349,429,240.00. The simple truth is the life is being taxed out of our communities. In this example, I am only highlighting Property Taxes. In addition to these, there is Income Taxes (Federal & State), Sales Taxes, Capital Gains Taxes, Social Security Taxes, Death Taxes and untold others.

Unsustainable!!

The people running the taxing entities need to figure out that 30% increases in the amount of taxes they are asking working people to pony up for Property Taxes each year is unsustainable. If you project into the future by looking at the past ten years this quarter of farmland will be paying $25,869.38 by the year 2025. That is $169.69 dollars per acre.

Even though each of these taxing entities has been blessed with “wind fall profit” over the last several years, it seems all we ever hear from them is that they always need more. We need to start asking these taxing entities and the people elected to run them, just how much is enough? Do they want to tax every private entity out of business or will they need more than that?