Nekilnojamojo turto apmokestinimo reforma ir jos perspektyvos Lietuvoje.
This article describes a reform of property taxation in Lithuania. Thus, the place of property taxes in Lithuanian tax system, essential advantages and deficiencies of this tax, possible taxation alternatives are discussed in the light of general taxation principles. Furthermore, it is attempted to determine an economic impact of property taxes and establish links between tax policy and sustainable development of urbanisation. Property taxes are attractive as they correspond to the major taxation principles, especially in respect of justice, equity etc. The tax base is large and inelastic, the criteria of calculation of this tax are rather simple and understandable, the tax could facilitate to the development of industrialisation, land development and improvement programmes, etc. In addition, the income received through this tax could be used for improvement of local environment. This should also raise value of property of particular location. The critics of this tax could be based on the fact that the tax shall not be paid on the new delivered goods and serviced, it could frighten the investors, strangle the elders who could not afford themselves retaining the property acquired during the whole life. Furthermore, the periodic re-evaluation of taxable base is rather expensive device. In summary, the tax could be justified not only for its fiscal function. The taxation of property also means that its owners will be obliged to use it in the most efficient way or transfer it to the others who need it more. Until 2002 almost all the new Lithuanian tax laws which regulate taxable income to be transferred to the state budget were enacted. However Lithuanian tax reform was not finished until now, as state financial institutions have not contributed enough to the problem of property taxation and funding of municipalities. Worldwide property taxes are one of most important sources to fund municipalities. Currently, property is levied according to the land tax and to the real estate tax to be paid by enterprises and organizations. Considering contemporary property taxation tendencies it is suggested to levy residential property. However the tax should not restrict inhabitants to use property for personal needs. Therefore, it shall be deemed that the minimal non-taxed amount should be established for the residential property which is declared as a principal residence. The particular non-taxed amounts could be established upon the decision of councils of municipalities. In addition, it is suggested to enable councils of municipalities to fix particular tax rates and/or exempt certain tax payer or property from this tax on the expense of their own budgets. Councils of municipalities are familiar with situation on particular location the best and, therefore, they would be able to fix the most effective tax rates. It is also recommended to apply graded tax rates in respect of different sorts of property, i.e. the biggest ones to apply in respect of land located in the cities. This would enhance the development of urbanization. Respectively low rates are to be applied in respect of residence property, residence land plots, garden - plots, etc. Some bigger rates could be also established in respect of residence property which was not declared as the first residence.
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