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COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET  November 1994, Week 2

COMMUNET November 1994, Week 2

Subject:

A HUMBLE OBSERVATION

From:

Paul Foldes <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Communet: Community and Civic Network Discussion List

Date:

Tue, 8 Nov 1994 23:02:46 LCL

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (66 lines)

Subject: A Humble observation
 
 
 
 
 -> From: Brent Wall <[log in to unmask]> wrote on the
 -> Subject:      Re: Should companies pay to advertise on the Internet?
 > I may be, and probably am a minority of one, when it comes to the
 -> commercial underwriting of our (the Tallahassee-Leon County Free-Net
 -> Project).  The Leon County Board of County Commissioners, in no uncertain
 -> terms, told the Library, who is the cutomer front-end to the net, that
 -> they are not about ready to shell out $200,000 to $400,000 per annum to
 -> undrwrite the electronic library.  Given a financial background, and as
 -> the County's chief policy analyst for the net project, I have been
 -> searching for a non-property tax (read: wealth tax) option for funding
 -> that does not violate the "national" goal of "universal access".
  I was pondering the same question today when I saw this post. In
"selling" governments on both participating and subsidizing local
"free-nets" I was looking for some "hook" to help rationalize public
expenditures for such a system.
 
How does the following rationale strike members of this list?
 
Assumption: With more electronic commerce going point to point in
cyberspace, how will local governments tax such commerce, unless they
know it is going on. How will they know about transactions, unless they
are party to the net on which such transactions take place.
 
Consequently, it is in the interest (good old "enlightened
self-interest") of local governments; and state governments for that
matter (I won't worry about IRS for now) to encourage use of the
"free-net" to enable them to monitor activity; so as to be able to
ascertain what, and where the new "tax base" is.
 
As the commercial office buildings and some retail areas empty out
because tenants conduct their businesses from homes, or less expensive
spaces - local ^elected^ officials will be caught between a rock and a
hard place. The commercial assessment base (value of commercial
properties subject to tax) will inevitably decrease (they can only
discriminate so much in raising commercial real estate taxes to make up
for lower valuations) and therefore residential real estate taxes will
go up.
 
Commercial real estate owners may be PAC contributors, but local
residential property owners are not only voters! but neighbors - making
raising their taxes more painful. So, what to do?
 
I suspect they will look for other sources of tax base - and unless they
know where it is (as in hosting it on the free-net) how will they know
where to find it, and how to value the amount of commerce, as they will
not have a clue.
 
Thoughts, comments?
 
paul foldes - 15 years background in commercial real estate counseling
 
 
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Paul Foldes, JD ("CyberCatalyst")| Phone:+1.703.370.0009 | Fax:+1.703.751.6528
Internet:    [log in to unmask]    | DISTANCE NEGOTIATION SUPPORT SERVICES
E-Mail: MCI Mail+CompuServe+AOL  | Business . Professional . Personal Matters
 
 " Effective Problem Solving + Solution Implementation ... Wherever Located "
------------------------------------------------------

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