Nonprofits become tax targets for strapped cities, states

Nonprofits become tax targets for strapped cities, states

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The clashes are prompting some interesting philosophical debates about the benefits nonprofits bring to the communities that host them.

Most tax-exempt property is actually owned by the government, so it's understandable nonprofits feel targeted when they're accused of leeching off of taxpayers through their own property tax exemptions. It's also worth noting that part of the reason some states are short on cash in the first place is a habit of giving tax incentives to businesses willing to locate or stay there.

"Local government finances are stronger because of the work of nonprofits in their communities," said David Thompson, vice president of public policy at the National Council of Nonprofits. He noted that some nonprofits, like parochial schools or soup kitchens, perform work otherwise assumed by the government and so reduce its costs.

Others, like museums and universities, boost the quality of life, indirectly swelling a town's coffers by drawing more taxpaying residents and visitors and driving up property values. 

Source Name: 
Politico
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