Thursday, 17 February 2011

Sarah Palin and property ownership

Safari Lake cabin (Photo courtesy of Mudflats)

Following on from Housegate, it seems appropriate to look into the Palin's other properties and the issues arising from their attitudes to property ownership.

The Palins own a total of six properties in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough: Two houses in Wasilla in their own names, three properties on Safari Lake with Scott Richter and one cabin on Alexander Creek with a bunch of people.

One of the properties on Safari Lake caused some controversy last year, when it was discovered that although two cabins were built on the land in 2006, the Palins and Mr Richter failed to inform the authorities and paid taxes on the land only until 2010.

The tax bill jumped from $124.91 in 2009 to $1,156.10 in 2010. The Palins evaded taxes for four years.

(Please click on image to enlarge)

Sarah Palin's attorney, Mr Van Flein, blamed the borough for not doing their job in assessing the value of the property. The borough said they rely on property owners to inform them about any changes that may affect the value of their properties.

Sarah Palin was sworn in as governor of Alaska in December 2006. It would be fair to assume that the governor would strive to set a good example for the rest of the citizens of the state by adhering to the law and the rules and regulations of the land.

Taxes pay for services on which people may have to rely on at some point. One of these services is provided by the Fire Department. Let's imagine that sometime in 2007 there was an explosion followed by a fire on one the Safari Lake cabins. Who would put the fire out and try to save the lives of anybody caught in the incident? What if the Fire Department went by the information provided by the property owners and didn't bother to turn up to put out a fire on an "empty" tract of land?

People don't like paying taxes, but taxes buy a number of things that allow us to have some security and prevent us from living in chaos. What would we do without the police, firefighters, garbage collectors, schools, libraries, decent roads and many, many other services?

How would a mayor or a governor be able to govern if all the citizens followed Sarah Palin's example and didn't pay their taxes until they were found out, then blamed it on somebody else?

What would be the fate of the country if Sarah Palin called the shots and led by example?

An alert reader noticed something curious in the assessment of the value of Sarah Palin's new chateau, here's a screenshot:

(Please click on image to enlarge)

The building appears to have two assessment values, $2,000 and $5,500. The form states that the actual building was 53% complete. How did the authorities arrive at these values? Does it mean that once completed the building will be valued at either $4,000 or $11,000? The mind boggles...

This link to the property search on the Matanuska-Susitna Borough website shows all six properties owned by the Palins and the details of the buidings, values, taxes and other interesting information.

Please read previous posts on this topic for further details.