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Articles on land tax

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Progressive in theory, regressive in practice: that’s how we tax income from savings

It would be a mistake to think that just because higher earners face higher tax rates, that's what they pay. When it comes to income from savings it's the other way around.
The digital economy will impact the ability of cities to generate revenue through traditional land-based taxes. A new solution is needed. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch

A taxing problem: Canadian cities desperately need new sources of revenue

As more Canadians flock to urban centres, those cities have fewer options to raise taxes New tax policies are needed that reflect the shift to a digital economy.
When public investment in a development like Sydney’s Northern Beaches Hospital boosts land values, who should reap those gains: the community or individual owners? NSW Premier's Office/AAP

Tax on ‘unearned gains’ is the missing piece of the affordable housing puzzle

Who is entitled to the increase in value created by planning approvals, new infrastructure, population growth or urban development? For John Stuart Mill, the answer would have been the community.
Older Australians are not deterred by financial barriers as much as emotional ones, when it comes to downsizing. www.shutterstock.com

Why older Australians don’t downsize and the limits to what the government can do about it

When people do downsize, financial incentives are generally not the big things on their minds. And so most of the budget’s financial incentives will go to those who were going to downsize anyway.
The Turnbull government’s line that supply is the key to affordability finds little support among housing experts. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

What housing issues should the budget tackle? This is what our experts say

Housing experts writing for The Conversation largely agree on the government policies that are causing negative distortions in the market and the wider economy. And supply is not the key concern.
Federal Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull are eyeing value capture as a way to fund projects, but how will they sell a new tax to voters? Paul Miller/AAP

Value capture: a good idea to fund infrastructure but not easy in practice

Consider these home truths: value capture is a tax, it would need to apply to the family home and deciding which areas it covers would be politically contentious. A broad-based land tax is simpler.
This transit-oriented development in Oakland, California, combines residential housing with easy access to local transport options and amenities. Eric Fredericks/flickr

Make housing affordable and cut road congestion all at once? Here’s a way

A combination of transit-oriented centres, inclusionary zoning and a special rate on land instead of stamp duty could make housing more affordable by cutting congestion, development and travel costs.

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