The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities (CCM) has formed a commission that will seek to develop a comprehensive, grassroots property tax relief initiative to be presented directly to Connecticut voters across the state’s 169 municipalities.
The timing for completing the project and promoting proposals across the state will coincide with the General Assembly election campaigns next fall and the longer, five-month General Assembly session in the first half of 2021.
“Mayors and first selectmen know of the challenges managing a community during these tough economic times,” CCM Executive Director Joe DeLong said. “One of those challenges is operating in a state where you have to contend with the third-highest property tax rate in the country. Looking for ways to examine solutions for Connecticut’s property taxpayers is the intention of CCM’s new Commission on Property Tax Reform.”
One of the commission’s chief aims “is to examine ways to improve the delivery of local services in a cost-effective and property taxpayer-focused manner,” Delong added. “The commission will examine structural changes needed to make towns and cities — thus the state — more economically viable, and more attractive places to call home, work and run a business.”
The commission is expected to meet through the spring to develop recommendations. Afterwards, CCM will launch an intensive grassroots campaign to inform the public of the commission’s recommendations, to ensure that “meaningful property tax reform is a major part of the 2020 General Assembly election campaign, and that real action occurs after the election,” according to the organization.
The commission’s work will be guided by consulting groups the Center for State and Local Finance at Georgia State University; the Edward Collins Center for Public Management at UMASS – Boston’s McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies; and Pro Bono Public Pension consulting service in Tuscumbia, Alabama.