NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

January 20, 2013

In Amesbury, 'It's the tax rate, stupid'


Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

I read with interest Mac Cerullo’s Amesbury City Notebook in the Jan. 15 edition of The Daily News.

Mr. Cerullo mentions some of the specifics surrounding Amesbury’s embarrassing property tax rates, including the fact that the property values are the “primary driver” of the tax rate. And while he mentions the real estate bubble burst as a primary factor in the decline of Amesbury’s property values, this was five years ago.

He conspicuously fails to mention that Amesbury’s most recent $67 million decline in assessed values is totally out of line with that of our neighboring communities, some of which are now enjoying a rebound of real estate values.

Why is there such a diminished demand for Amesbury housing?

It’s the tax rate, stupid.

Kenneth Pinette

Amesbury