OK, This grinds me to no end so excuse my tendancy to get on the .
The community I was born in but moved away from, I own property in. It is going through some tough times and several of the property owners have filed paperwork to separate from the community in an effort to reduce their taxes. This is a hugely contentious issue in the area and non-residents should really have no say in it (i.e. no vote on the matter) which includes me. I'm A-OK with that.
My gripe is that my land was included with other residents land in the petition to separate from the community without my consent.
It appears that by law in Michigan, I am not required to give consent to be included in a petition of this nature. This seems unequivocally wrong to not require permission, by law, from any tax paying landowner if their land is included in a petition to separate or join another community with obvious tax implications, resident or not - they pay the taxes!! A nonresident should not get a vote but they should have a say in whether or not they want to be included in the petition. This is a decision that only impacts the land owner and maintains the integrity of the residential vote - which I firmly support occurring on this matter.
Is it a coincidence my property, which is a smidge less than 50% of the total acreage involved, is included on the petition to leave the community (which includeds 60+ parcels), ? 'Seems suspicious to me...
My guff with my neighbor, who organized this petition, I'll deal with in time. I'll figure some Christian way of working with them on this. My bigger issue is the law itself. Non-residents have zero say in these matters and your land can be picked up and moved to a "more convenient" tax jurisdiction without any input from the land owner in Michigan if they are non-residents of the communities involved.
As it stands, due to an error on the organizers part (my neighbor), they assumed a parcel that I don't hold the title to was mine and listed a residents property, who is not part of the movement, on the petition w/o their consent as a result. A resident doesn't have a say beyond their vote?! Surely something is wrong here! As it stands, it sounds like you can organize your community to vote a parcel of someone out or into a community without their consent... all you need is a majority of the communities involved and enough signatures on the petition.
Can anyone explain what the reasoning is for this and how its reconciled against my property rights or a fundamental right to representation in a matter of taxation? Am I being too cynical when I really feel like I'm just holding a lease on my property for "representative bodies" to manipulate? Have I missed something here?
Yes, I have spoken with a lawyer. No, it wasn't a productive meeting. Yes, I plan to write my state representatives. What would I have said if I was asked? My response:"what are the implications?". Both the pro and against parties are still arguing over significant details of the process so I'd still be waiting for definition...
I figure raising some awareness isn't a bad thing to do either - that's why I bring it up here.