The Nebraska Legislature's Tax Modernization Committee has gotten plenty of complaints about property valuations from landowners.
At hearings Monday in Scottsbluff and Tuesday in North Platte, the sentiments were the same: Property taxes are too high and so are valuation increases. For example, Custer County rancher Jim Jones said Tuesday that the valuation on his land rose by more than $310,000 in 2012. But he said the land was worth no more to him after the increase than before. He says real estate taxes need to be based on productivity.
The committee has been assigned to review Nebraska's tax system for fairness, simplicity and stability while helping to compete with other states. It is focusing on property, income and sales taxes and will report its findings back to the Legislature by mid-December.
A hearing will take place 1:30 p.m. Thursday at Northeast Community College in Norfolk. Hearings in Omaha and Lincoln are scheduled for October.