Vote Curdy in Democratic Primary for HD-100

by jhwygirl

I guess this would be an official endorsement, folks.

I think E. Willis Curdy is the best candidate to oust Bill Nooney (who doesn’t even live in HD-100) from his seat as representative for HD-100.

House District 100

Curdy is also the best person to bring some logic back to the state house, with his 30 years of experience as a high school teacher (talk about herding cats!). He’s been a Bitterroot Hotshot and a Missoula Smokejumper – both jobs that require strong leadership and teamwork to work successfully, and he’s also been a USFS pilot (6 years) – again, another example of working well with leadership and teams.

For flat-out political experience, Curdy has served as trustee for the Missoula Rural Fire District for 4 years and also as a trustee for Big Flat Irrigation District for 6 years.

Nooney has voted against K-12 school funding, while Curdy not only has a background in education, but he also has a strong platform of supporting K-12 education. Education is important, and investing in Montana’s kids – our future – is part of that picture.

Curdy believes in small government – in the ability of local governments to control its local issues. Nooney, on the other hand, would prefer to have Helena regulating gravel pits and other development issues that arise in your back yard. Tell me – which perspective is smaller government?

Maybe Nooney’s support of gravel pits and less local control is due to his love for real estate $ to help support his last election bid. I also notice he’s taken some $ from self-professed lobbyists and the Montana Petroleum Marketers Association. Check it out.

I guess if you’re going to outspend your opponent 3-1, like he did in 2006, you’re going to have to take cash from developers and lobbyists.

Here’s Curdy’s top priorities:

My first priority is to increase funding for our public schools and freeze postsecondary tuition for Montana residents for the next two years. I will work to strengthen the role of county governments to work with property owners to protect their property, property values, and their health and livelihoods when developers seek to locate gravel pits and cement and asphalt plant operations in residential areas. I will work to protect property owners against higher property taxes resulting from increased value of their property brought by reappraisal.

How, think about Nooney’s, which are to weaken K-12 and weaken local government through heavier state regulation. Nooney’s against higher taxes – I’m sure he’d tell you that – but consider that he’s more supportive of state regulation of development issues than having local governments do it and I think you’ll understand that Nooney is a hypocrite. Nooney voted against the state’s CHIP program and he’s voted against funding Montana Aging Services.

Nooney’s got to go. Missoula needs someone in the legislature that can work with people and get stuff done. Curdy has the resume to do just that.

Vote E. Willis Curdy in the June 3rd primary for HD-100.

~~footnote: The Missoulian has a piece overviewing both Democratic candidates for HD-100. Check it out.

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  1. goof houlihan

    ” I will work to protect property owners against higher property taxes resulting from increased value of their property brought by reappraisal.”

    So who will pay the increased property taxes? People whose appraisal didn’t go up?

  2. Every single person – whether in office or running for it – says that stuff.

    You know it – every 6 years the state goes through this ridiculous reappraisal scheme, and then they maneuver a way to reduce taxes or keep everyone from paying more.

    I mean, I’m not all rah-rah-rah over taxes, but why in the hell reappraise if there is no intent to collect the additional monies it (should) result in?

    I mean, in practical terms, we’ve gained more homes, more businesses, more of everything, and yet, there the state is maintaining the amount people pay. Administration after administration, democrat or republican.

    I could see looking at the picture and saying taxes should be lowered – but, honestly, I can’t see how all of them can say to lower taxes based on appraisal.

    I’d rather just quit appraising. I mean, how much does that cost?

    Besides that – take a look at the appraised value. It clearly doesn’t match market values. What IS the purpose?

    Someone – pleez! – explain…..

  3. goof houlihan

    It’s never been my position. I’ve long advocated for historical cost, or last appraisal, as the basis for taxation. It’s not the person who buys a home, raises a family and lives in it thirty years who should pay the constant increases in demands on government, nope, but the flippers and the speculators.

    The appraised value is so far from market value it’s pathetic, and the older parts of town, so in demand, have a much smaller percentage of their market value taxed than new houses–despite that part of town also being heaving speculated and turned over.

    And then it’s put through the “taxable value” percentage and the “homestead exemption”.

    THEN an increase is “phased in” (one proposal was to do it over fifty years!!) so that people now are getting taxed, only now taxed, on the full value of the last appraisal.

    Which means that market increases since then, even with a slump the last year, haven’t been factored in. In the midst of a slowdown and a market value slump, most people’s real estate will still appraise higher than it did six years ago, showing just how disconnected the whole “appraisal” idea is.

  4. Jason Wiener

    Property taxes are assessed on the taxable value of a house, which is a percentage of the market value. The market value is adjusted by periodic re-appraisal but every year taxable value as a proportion of market value is reduced by the Dept. of Revenue.

    The goal of re-appraisal is not to raise revenue but equalize tax payments among segments of the state whose property values relative to one another have changed. This means the taxable value as a proportion of market value is adjusted with an eye toward not increasing taxable value because of market appreciation. The difficulty comes in because the same proportion applies to the whole state of Montana and property values are not changing uniformly.

    The Dept. of Revenue has put out a
    very good primer on property taxes
    .

  5. goof houlihan

    Don’t know who you are, Jason, and you could say likewise, but I’ve worked extemely closely with all aspects of property taxation in the state of Montana.

    And did so for many years. Very little the DOR says is worth reading. They are the essence of “entrenched bureaucracy” and they are hell bent on preserving and building their empire.

    This is the bureaucracy that pissed away seventy million dollars on computer software development, paid to foreigners only to have to junk the whole system.

    Wanzanreid, at least, has their number.

  6. goof houlihan

    Adn by the way, appraised value is supposed to equal market value, uniformly, but doesn’t, and isn’t even close in individual instances, and taken as a whole is consisteny only in it’s inconsistency.

    If the original number is bullshit, no matter what multiplier is applied, it’s still bullshit.

  7. Once again, I find myself and goof in agreement.

    It’s an assinine exercise in futility to appraise – not at market value – and then adjust tax rates so that no one is paying more.

    Why appraise?

  8. petetalbot

    I find this property tax discussion interesting, but here’s some other info (just to muddy the waters). Curdy’s primary opponent, Gary Brown, just received the endorsement from NARAL-Montana.

  9. Jason Wiener

    Goof, so does that mean you took issue with anything in the document I linked to? If so, please help me understand because I’ve directed others to it as a resource in understanding property taxes. Also, please help me understand the inconsistency between appraised and market value. Is the difference just because of phase-in or are there other issues?

    jhwy, I asked the same question when I heard about the practice. The answer I got was that appraised values rise differently in different locations (e.g. Northside vs University District) and, to equalize the tax burden, those relative changes in property value need to be accounted for even if the taxable value multiplier is applied uniformly. I believe it’s also the law, not that that’s as much a justification for why as an explanation of why.

    Pete (and everyone else), Gary Brown also opposes digging up and burning more coal while Willis Curdy talks the green coal talk.

  10. goof houlihan

    It’s ok as far as it goes, but it doesn’t address any issues of equity. The system has broken. Applying a general rate of increase or decrease to bad beginning values merely compounds the error.

    But equity and fairness is what the director has been talking about all over the state.

    Remember, the 2008 taxes will be based on the 2003 value. What has the value of your property done since 2003? Not since last year, no, since 2003.

    You see, everybody’s thinking, “oh my value went down” from last year, “will my taxes go down”? But their taxes last year were based on 67% of the increase in value between 1998 and 2003, NOT what the value was in 2007.

    And if the 98 value was crap? Then the general appraised value percentage increase for your area just applied a general multiplier to a crap number, then phased it in over six years compounded the inequity over six years!

    Two houses with a market value of 400k. One 98 value was 150k one was 300k. For the last five years, the first guy has paid a helluva lot less taxes than the second guy. All in the same interest of “unfair that taxes go up due to increase in appraised value”. Nope, that’s not what was unfair, what was unfair was that two houses of equal value paid drastically different taxes over the period.

    So now, dudes and dudettes, how does “phase in”, encourage fairness?

    And while local govts are not allowed to reap the benefits of increased taxable value due to reappraisal, you can be sure that the 101 state mills reap every nickel.

  11. I say we reduce the DoR by making ‘disclosure’ the rule, the method of valuation. Set up a mapping GIS program that inputs this data, and every 5 years or so, adjust the homes that have sold or resold.

    Right now, the whole current system is a shame – it encourages big business and very anti-consumer.

    Disclosure should be the rule.

  12. K.

    They both look like good–very good–candidates. A NARAL-MT endorsement is nothing to sneeze at, either, and gives me something to waffle about. Who appears to be the most well-rounded–on paper, at least? I agree, it’s Curdy. Plus, Curdy is the one who came out to the sticks and knocked on my door. He lives in the district, and is the only one who does. (Huh? How/why can someone represent a district that he/she doesn’t live in?) He seems to be very engaged, something I can’t say for his primary opponent (limited as my knowledge is), and this suggests that he might be the more dynamic and win-able candidate. Nooney has got to go. Already his billboard-sized signs have sprouted like a blight– apparently he hopes brand/name recognition will prevail over shoddy, non-performing goods.

  13. goof houlihan

    Hey, we’ve been doing it this way for decades! Not really, you know, prior to school equalization there was only the 6 mills statewide, so the discrepancies between each individual elected county assessor weren’t a problem.

    Then came the 40 mills, and the 22 and the 33 mills, all school mills, and suddenly the statewide differences were a problem. So DOR assumed the county assessors, and instead of a real person at a local level, you the puzzle palace in Helena.

  14. I’ve been told (Pete?) that both Curdy and Brown have been endorsed by the MCV…but their website doesn’t mention either endorsement, even though they’ve got a bunch up.

    Still looking into that one.

  15. petetalbot

    I received a mailer from Montana Conservation Voters (MCV) that endorsed both candidates. It also gave Nooney a 15% approval rating.

  16. what say you, Mr. Curdy? by the way, i wish to humbly thank all… repubs, demos, independents, and libertarians who have the guts to ask us to vote for them. democracy just wouldn’t work without you folks….your rewards do not ever measure up to your sacrifices. all who are willing to sit in endless legislative, county, city and even school board meetings that drone on and on and who give their all to make sure that citizens are heard and that the business of government is carried out honestly and done to the best of their ability. I could not even dream of doing it. I have watched too many city council meetings. you should all receive medals.

  1. 1 Primary election preview « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] Buzzas/Ron Erickson Senate District 47 race, the House District 100 primary between Gary Brown and Willis Curdy, and a couple of races where sitting legislators are being challenged (incumbent Michele Reinhart […]

  2. 2 Gary Brown, Candidate for HD-100 Withdraws « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] means E. Willis Curdy will likely pick up the challenge. Curdy was Brown’s opponent in the Democratic primary, […]

  3. 3 E. Willis Curdy Backed by Missoula Democrats’ Finest « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] I like Curdy – not that I didn’t like Brown – but I liked Curdy because of his wide background: a 30-year high school teacher (who could endure that long?!), a Bitterroot Hotshot and a Missoula Smokejumper (talk about demonstrating both teamwork and leadership!), and (and!) a USFS pilot (stress management, anyone?). There’s more – trustee on both the Missoula Rural Fire District and the Big Flat Irrigation District (ever had to work with irrigators?)…..Lot’s of great qualities in there to help bring the legislature closer to getting done the huge amounts of work it needs to do. […]




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