The Guardian: End Land banking with Land taxing
|March 9, 2014||Posted by Staff under Good Press|
This 2014 excerpt of The Guardian, Mar 2 is by Dave Hill.
Some insist that the land banking problem is overstated but the GLA/Molior report argued that if work on every site for which planning permission had been obtained at that time began immediately “somewhere between 50,000 and 70,000″ homes would be completed for each of the ensuing three years.
If “use it or lose it” could help bring about even the lower of those two figures in London it would be a big boost.
Meanwhile calls from across the political spectrum and elsewhere continue for the introduction of another measure to lessen landbanking – a land value tax, something both Darren Johnson and Stephen Knight strongly endorse. Conservatives might reflect that Winston Churchill was pretty keen on the idea too.
Ed. Notes: Land banking is polite for land speculation. It results in wasteful use of metro land, making it a selfish, anti-social practice. The cure that’s always worked before is to charge owners a rent for their land, no matter how they’re using it. To pay the rent (or tax), they use their land well. To make the charge fair, it’d be good to at the same time lower or remove other taxes, especially on buildings. Going one step further, it’d be great to return the recovered rents as a dividend to residents, sort of like what Singapore does. You get better land use, you get more affordable housing, and you get economic justice, all in one (the one of geonomics).