Opinion: State tax structure amounts to farm welfare

Reading the Jan. 15 issue of the Addy Indy inspired me to pen this missive. Bob Foster, the Middlebury Moo Doo Guru, and Bill Moore, Vermont Farm Bureau lobbyist, painted farmers as the epitome of philanthropy.
Untrue as proven by the following scenario. A business in Bristol assessed at $2.5 million, the property tax, (calculated at the non-residential rate) would be $56,877.50. Farm buildings in Bristol assessed at $2.5 million, the property tax is $0.
This scenario is constant throughout Vermont, only changing by the different non-residential tax rates in each town.
This so called philanthropy sounds like farm welfare to me.
Craig Scribner Sr.
Editor’s note: The writer cited Vermont statutes — specifically title 32 VSA, chapter 124, sub-section 3752, No. 12, which says, “With respect to farm buildings, ‘use value appraisal’ means zero percent of fair market value.”

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