In support of the Make It Fair campaign to reform commercial property tax in California, we are developing a set of materials to showcase how restoring county resources can advance health equity. We are also mobilizing public health to join the campaign, which is in its early stages.
We are working with California Calls, as part of the Make It Fair campaign, to strategically bring a public health perspective into their focus to reform commercial property taxes in California.
Many involved in public health and health care — including doctors, nurses, researchers, public health agency leaders, leaders of public health and medical nonprofits, and city and county hospital administrators— understand that increasing government revenue through tax reform would benefit public health. They have seen firsthand the impact that commercial property tax loopholes created by Prop 13 have had on educational and social resources — the social safety net, community infrastructure, and regulatory oversight — and thereby, the health and wellbeing of millions of Californians.
Our work consists of two parts: conducting research to understand how additional tax revenue will translate into improved health and social services, and convening and mobilizing health professionals as a new constituency and voice advocating for tax reform.
Are you a health professional in California interested in making sure Make It Fair becomes a reality? Contact Lili Farhang (firstname.lastname@example.org) to find out how to get involved.
About Proposition 13
Proposition 13 is a constitutional amendment that passed in 1978 and made significant changes to how and when property is taxed. Prop 13 intended to help protect homeowners from rapidly rising property taxes that many could not afford. But hidden in Prop 13’s fine print was a huge loophole. Many big corporations and wealthy commercial property owners have used the law to avoid paying taxes on the actual value of their property. This practice has decimated a longstanding funding source for programs and policies that keep our communities healthy. Many of the health disparities our state suffers from now can be traced back to Prop 13.