Taxation in American States and Cities

By Richard T. Ely | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII.
TAXATION OF INCOMES.

THE POSITION OF AN INCOME TAX IN A SYSTEM OF TAXES.

THE taxes which have already been described are suitable for local purposes. The central tax of a proper system of local taxation is the tax on real estate; and this will vary from year to year according to the needs of the public treasury. An estimate must first be made of the revenues from productive property and local enterprises, from natural monopolies, from liquor licenses, and from all other sources, and then a tax-rate on real estate, just high enough to make up what is still lacking should be fixed. It ought not in any American city to exceed one per cent. of the true selling value of the property.

The central and variable tax in a proper system of state taxation ought to be an income tax. This should vary from year to year according to the needs of the state government, and its rate should be calculated after the revenues from other sources have been estimated.


EQUALITY OF TAXATION IMPOSSIBLE WITHOUT AN INCOME TAX.

It has already been stated in this work that the farmers of Maryland and her sister states, and other hard-working people, are right in their feeling that ali men of means should contribute to the support of government in proportion to their ability. It is a just grievance that many who can amply afford to bear a part of the burdens of government

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