Letter: Insult after injury

To the Editors:

I understand the Town’s Board of Finance will raise our mill rate some 2% for the new fiscal year. The Board Chairman, Mr. Rutishauser, allowed that it could have been worse. While I applaud Mr. Rutishauser for his public service to the town, he’s missing the point — it is much, much more severe than the 2% he allows.

Under the new federal tax law, Wilton’s property taxes have increased radically. If for example, a homeowner is in the new 24% tax bracket (AGI of $82,500 to $157,500) and he or she allocates 100% of the $10,000 cap on state and local tax deduction to the property tax, this Wilton homeowner with an $18,000 annual tax bill will see an effective tax increase of $1,920 due to the new federal tax law. The 2% mill rate increase adds additional $360 to the amount, an insult after the gross injury we are about to experience.

For higher-end homes, with higher marginal tax rates (and incomes, admittedly) will see real tax increases of $10,000 or more. It is no wonder that for sale signs seem to be multiplying in our town faster than dandelions, in this year of endless winter.

Eventually, both the Board of Finance and our town leaders will be forced to consider both budget reductions and other revenue opportunities, perhaps even the dreaded high-density housing. I respectfully suggest this discussion happen soon, because our neighbors and taxpayers are voting with their feet.
P R Burnaman II
Nod Hill Road, April 12