NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A new effort is underway to attempt to roll back Nashville’s controversial 34% property tax increase.
The group 4GoodGovernment is mailing out more than 200,000 petitions to rally support for the 2021 Nashville Taxpayer Protection Act (NTPA).
If passed, the NTPA would roll back the 2021-2022 tax rate to the 2019-2020 level. Once the rates are rolled back, the NTPA stipulates the property tax rate could only increase 3% a year without voter approval.
“A 34% increase is a huge increase,” said Jim Roberts, a Nashville attorney. “There’s no consideration for the people, and it is time to rein it in.”
4GoodGovernment collected over 27,000 signatures last year in an effort to reject the property tax increase. However, a judge ruled the petition should not be placed on a ballot for voters. Supporters of the NTPA are hopeful this time will be different.
“The response has been overwhelming from people emailing me and social media contacts,” said Roberts. “They are excited we brought this back. We need the taxpayers to step up on this. The only chance we have to roll this back, is this petition."
This time around, 33,000 valid signatures are needed to get the NTPA before voters. The deadline to mail in the petition is Mar. 8. The group is hoping for a special election on May 28 or June 14.
“I think when they look at these they will say these are all good government ideas and we will make Nashville a better place together,” said Roberts.
Andrea Fanta, a spokesperson for Nashville Mayor John Cooper responded to the new effort with a statement:
“After stabilizing the city’s budget for the first time in years, the mayor is focused on solving problems - building new schools, investing in our school kids, building a new police precinct, and building more greenways for more livable neighborhoods. Now is no time to get distracted or be divided – not when 700,000 people are counting on us to get the city’s work done.”
The NTPA would also:
-Lower the number of signatures needed to prompt a recall election of elected officials.
-Abolish elected officials’ lifetime benefits.
- Require any charter amendments approved by voters after Jan. 1, 2021 to be amendable only by voters.
-Block any transfer of publicly owned Parks, Greenway and Public Lands without the support of all Metro Council Members.
-Require Nashville pro sports facilities to be reverted to public property if no games are played at the location for more than 24 months, or if the team leaves Nashville.
For more information on the group 4GoodGovernment, or to download a petition visit: https://4goodgovernment.com/