Bipartisan Prop 13 Reform?

Well, kinda. Enabling legislation will get a tweak

by Brian Leubitz

Call it the third rail, or whatever you so desire, but changing anything even remotely associated with Prop 13 was considered strictly verboten. However, Asm. Tom Ammiano has apparently broken through some of that muck. Ammiano’s legislation, AB 2372 has now received the support of a number of business organizations, and even the Howard Jarvis people say that they won’t rally the troops against the bill. This is rare:

“This particular loophole really pushed a button in people,” said Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco), coauthor of the measure, AB 2372, with Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima).

Lenny Goldberg, leader of the California Tax Reform Assn., praised the measure as a “step forward” and noted the irony of being on the same side as his frequent foes. (LA Times)

Now, to be clear, this is not the major Prop 13 reform that we’ve been talking about. It resolves a basic fairness question. Long story short, commercial real estate that never transferred over a 50% interest wasn’t reassessed for Prop 13 purposes. It got a lot of attention in a few very notable instances, and the public pressure was even getting to Jon Coupal and his HJTA horde.

Don’t expect this to become a trend. The Chamber of Commerce is unlikely to have wholeheartedly changed their tune, but this is solid policy. However you look at it, this small change makes sense.

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