Deseret News
Letter to the editor

I am writing in support of SB214 that would phase out water property taxes and encourage water conservation in Utah.

The system that Utah has in place for water taxes and water pricing is flawed. Currently, property owners pay a tax to water districts to sell water to the property. This creates internal subsidies that allow water districts to sell water cheaper than true market value. This taxation leads to some of the lowest water prices in the West and encourages high municipal usage.

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The tax and subsidy system is problematic as it also raises issues of taxpayer money being used for subsidies for entities that don’t pay taxes and use large amounts of water. Universities, golf courses and government buildings use 10-20 times more water and are still given the subsidized price of water. Allowing these entities to have the subsidized water price creates no incentive for conservation, as they are paying little to nothing for water usage at the expense of the taxpayers.

Supporting SB214 would end this wasteful cycle and provide financial relief to property owners and forge a path toward real water conservation in Utah.

Baile Turnbow

Salt Lake City