EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

The hidden taxable capacity of land: enough and to spare

Mason Gaffney

International Journal of Social Economics, 2009, vol. 36, issue 4, pages 328-411

Abstract: Purpose – A tax based on land value is in many ways ideal, but many economists dismiss it by assuming it could not raise enough revenue. Standard sources of data omit much of the potential tax base, and undervalue what they do measure. The purpose of this paper is to present more comprehensive and accurate measures of land rents and values, and several modes of raising revenues from them besides the conventional property tax. Design/methodology/approach – The paper identifies 16 elements of land's taxable capacity that received authorities either trivialize or omit. These 16 elements come in four groups. Findings – In Group A, Elements 1-4 correct for the downward bias in standard sources. In Group B, Elements 5-10 broaden the concepts of land and rent beyond the conventional narrow perception, while Elements 11-12 estimate rents to be gained by abating other kinds of taxes. In Group C, Elements 13-14 explain how using the land tax, since it has no excess burden, uncaps feasible tax rates. In Group D, Elements 15-16 define some moot possibilities that may warrant further exploration. Originality/value – This paper shows how previous estimates of rent and land values have been narrowly limited to a fraction of the whole, thus giving a false impression that the tax capacity is low. The paper adds 14 elements to the traditional narrow “single tax” base, plus two moot elements advanced for future consideration. Any one of these 16 elements indicates a much higher land tax base than economists commonly recognize today. Taken together they are overwhelming, and cast an entirely new light on this subject.

Keywords: Depreciation; Economic resources; Land rents; Property tax; Tax burden; Taxation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2009
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.emeraldinsight.com/Insight/viewContentI ... le&contentId=1782614 (text/html)
Cannot be freely downloaded

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: http://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eme:ijsepp:v:36:y:2009:i:4:p:328-411

Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK
http://www.emeraldinsight.com/ijse.htm

Access Statistics for this article

International Journal of Social Economics is edited by Dr Colin Tyler and James Connelly

More articles in International Journal of Social Economics from Emerald Group Publishing
Series data maintained by Jade Turvey ().

 
Page updated 2014-02-18
Handle: RePEc:eme:ijsepp:v:36:y:2009:i:4:p:328-411