Does Use Value Taxation Hold Potential to Lower Farmers' Property Tax Bills?
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Many farmland owners and farmers are certainly interested in lowering their tax bills and many are interested in seeking alternatives to the current system of local taxation that relies so heavily on the property tax. The proliferation of cost of community service studies supported by farm and land preservation interest groups is testimony to the fact that farmers are becoming more emphatic that they receive their "fair share" of the benefits associated with the property taxes that they pay. But farmers must keep in mind that, though no one ever likes to pay taxes, almost everyone wants their local government to provide services for them. Finding an equitable and efficient arrangement to finance these services is a very delicate matter. Taxes on real and personal property constitute just less than 60 percent of total local revenues in Virginia. It goes without saying that Virginia localities rely heavily on property tax revenues to fund important local services like education, public safety, community development, and parks and recreation