On May 9, the Taxation Committee for the Legislature will be voting on LD 1521, an Act to Amend the Property Tax Laws. Passage would allow municipalities to impose new taxes on nonprofit organizations in lieu of property tax exemptions. The legislation has language that helps protect organizations such as the Hope Association, but passage would still have an impact on many similar organizations.

For years now, proposals have been made to tax nonprofits in lieu of property taxes, and for years, such proposals have been commonly referred to as social club bills.

We are most grateful for our municipalities, but I feel that taxing social clubs and the like would be counterproductive. Nonprofits don’t pay property taxes, but their services go a long way toward helping communities to prosper and grow in ways that its citizens don’t always realize.

Social clubs or, as I like to refer to them as, service clubs, regularly donate and support all kinds of community needs that help their community. They offer scholarships, grants and other supports to people who would otherwise miss out on opportunities to stretch and grow. Many nonprofits are employers whose employees pay back to their community.

I hope that the public will understand that the community benefits greatly from services that nonprofits provide.

Greg Fraser, Rumford

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