Yet in Fairfield, the owner of a house worth $580,250 - the median sales price in 2005 - paid $6,037 in property taxes, while the owner of a comparably priced home in Glen Ridge paid nearly twice that, an analysis of 2005 property tax and real estate records by The New York Times shows.
The wide variation in property tax bills in communities around the region illustrates how difficult it may be for elected officials, promising to address growing concern about the property tax burden, to come up with quick-fix solutions when there are so many factors driving tax rates up or down.
< Aside >Apropos to absolutely nothing, the article contains this line:
School districts in New York must pay the cost of teacher pensions, a responsibility that grew substantially in the years after poor stock market returns in 2000 and 2001. In New Jersey and Connecticut, the state pays for teachers' pensions.
< /aside >
So how do we fix it? To me, it doesn't sound like there is a good answer (but the first politician who proposes one wins - whatever he/she is running for), but somehow (at least) partially untying educational spending from local property taxes would have to be part of any solution. What is your solution? Fight it out in the comments.
Fessenden, Ford, Why Property Taxes Are All Over The Charts, New York Times, November 25, 2006.