Montgomery County Democratic Leaders Urge Hogan to Stand Up for Maryland Homeowners

Ike Leggett Sends Hogan a Urgent Letter

Annapolis, MD — As the Senate debates on Republicans’ tax scam, Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and all members of the Montgomery County Council sent a letter to Governor Larry Hogan urging him to speak out in opposition to the measure, which disproportionately affects Marylanders—especially Montgomery County homeowners.

The Democrats wrote: “With analysis showing that Maryland, and particularly our own county’s taxpayers, would be hit disproportionately hard, we urge you to stand with us to oppose Republicans’ tax proposals, which will penalize home ownership and prevent us from giving our children the world-class education they deserve.” 

Hogan has refused to speak out against Senate Republicans’ effort to penalize homeownership and make it unaffordable for young families, which penalizes Maryland disproportionately.

The measure could increase taxes on Montgomery County homeowners’ by more than $1,500.  The measure eliminates the State and Local Tax deduction, which is claimed by more than one-third of Montgomery County residents, and it makes the mortgage-interest deduction less valuable for homeowners.  The one-two punch of these destructive policies could depress the housing market by as much as 5 percent, according to some estimates. 

“This will undermine Maryland’s economy and the real estate industry, as you know from your own business experience,” the Democrats wrote.

The measure would also hurt Montgomery County students.  Maryland students would lose more than $12 billion in federal education funding in the next 10 years under the Senate’s proposal.  The reduction in federal education funding, paired with a potentially depressed housing market would severely reduce the County’s ability to invest in students.

In addition to County Executive Leggett, the letter was signed by Montgomery County Councilmembers Roger Berliner, Marc Elrich, Nancy Floreen, Tom Hucker, Sidney Katz, George Leventhal, Nancy Navarro, Craig Rice, and Hans Riemer.

The full text of the letter follows:

November 30, 2017

The Honorable Larry Hogan
Governor of Maryland 
100 State Circle
Annapolis, MD 21401

Dear Governor Hogan:

As County Executive and members of the Montgomery County Council, we are extremely concerned about current Republican proposals to penalize homeownership to provide tax giveaways to wealthy individuals and corporations. 

Under the tax legislation recently passed by the House of Representatives on a party-line vote, homeowners in Montgomery County will see their taxes increase by more than $1,000 dollars.  The Senate’s proposal, which is expected to receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate this week, would increase Montgomery County homeowners’ taxes by more than $1,500. 

For these important reasons, we are imploring you to add your voice to those who already oppose these efforts by clearly stating your opposition to these proposals and sending a letter to President Donald Trump, House Speaker Paul Ryan, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

The Republicans’ tax plans also penalize homeownership.  As you know, more than one-third of Montgomery County’s residents claim the state and local tax deduction, which would be drastically reduced in the House’s proposal and eliminated in the Senate’s plan.  The proposals also make the mortgage-interest deduction less valuable for homeowners.  These proposals would make homeownership less affordable for new families, and they could depress the housing market by as much as 5 percent, according to some estimates.  This will undermine Maryland’s economy and the real estate industry, as you know from your own business experience.

The proposals would also hurt students.  Maryland students would lose nearly $9 billion in federal education funding in the next 10 years under the House plan.  Under the Senate plan, our students would lose more than $12 billion.  Reduced federal funding for education, paired with a potentially depressed housing market would severely reduce our ability to ensure that all students have access to a world-class education.  

Businesses and families have always seen Maryland as an ideal place to invest and raise families, because of our high-quality of life, our high-quality public schools, and our highly-educated workforce.  There is no doubt that the proposals being discussed in the House and Senate will harm homeowners and make it harder for states to invest in their schools, which is why they have been opposed by both Republican and Democratic governors. 

With analysis showing that Maryland and particularly our county would be hit disproportionately hard, we urge you to stand with us to oppose Republicans’ tax proposals, which will penalize home ownership and prevent us from giving our children the world-class education they deserve.

Sincerely,

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