TaxPersonal TaxLiverpool puts forward land tax plan

Liverpool puts forward land tax plan

Businesses in Liverpool could see the uniform business rate transformed into a land tax if the city council can persuade the government to go ahead with a trial.

The council has already been told once that it cannot tryout the radical new tax form, but councillors hope a feasibility study commissioned to see if a land tax trial is possible will give them the ammunition they need to persuade government of their case.

The ruling Liberal Democrat party in Liverpool believes land tax would compel owners to bring unused and derelict city centre property back into use.

‘What we are hoping is that the study will prove our case. If we had a land tax we could see land being brought back into use,’ said councillor Richard Kemp the city council’s executive member for housing.

Results from the study are expected in the summer.

The Council has commissioned the Henry George Foundation, a charity at the heart of campaigns for sustainable taxation, to do the study.

Liverpool’s interest has been prompted by what have become cause celebre buildings in the city – the Exchange Flag and the Old Post Office – which many believe have become eyesores.

Environmentalists like Friends of the Earth have for some time backed a radical reform of the tax system to shift the burden from profits to land.

At the beginning of this month Friends of the Earth together with the Henry George Foundation launched an international research effort to support a shift to sustainable, or green, taxes.

The belief is that a shift to land taxes will force more efficient, and therefore more environmentally friendly, land use.

Links

Liverpool City Council

Friends of the Earth International

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