Anne Arundel reverses course on short sales
The about-face was an immediate reaction to an opinion issued yesterday afternoon by the Maryland Attorney General's office, which said statute and case law don't give counties the authority to tax homes in the way the county was doing.
More in today's story, including the promise of refunds -- though few homes actually got taxed in this way, the county says.
No one who commented on the blog post about it said they agreed with the policy. Wonk reader Frank Rizzo, for instance, thought the county should stop:
"If you owe 300k and the homes are selling for 200k, then guess what? The home is worth 200k," he wrote. "If the home was worth more, then most likely they would sell the home for more. ... It should not matter what the seller owes on the home when determining transfer taxes, as they are based on the SALES price. The County wants to keep assessments higher because they know if they ... come down, their property tax revenue will fall too."