The group Nebraskans United for Property Tax Relief is in the process of putting together a package to present to state legislators next month for their consideration in January.
Coalition member John Hansen, who’s president of the Nebraska Farmers Union, says the goal is to find a way to pay for schools while also cutting property taxes.
“Adequately funding education and providing real property tax relief continues to be a very large issue in almost all of the state legislative races,” Hansen says, “urban or rural, but especially rural.”
Hansen says the state’s tax system needs to be reconfigured because over the last 20 years, it’s shifted away from relying on income and sales taxes to property taxes.
“When we address that we’re going to need to realign some incoming sales tax,” Hansen says. “Our state needs to do that. Our state tax system is completely out of whack and disproportionately uses too much reliance on property to fund K-12 education.”
Hansen says state legislators discussed the issue this summer and made little progress.
“They’ve had one study group so far,” Hansen says. “To that extent, that was a positive, but in order to get something done, we’re going to need a lot more than ten conservative state senators.”
Hansen says his coalition will need to get the support of at least 33 legislators to overcome the governor’s opposition to their proposal.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton