Homeowners Targeted With “Rain Tax” for Rain that Falls on their Property

The rain in Maryland falls mainly on the taxpayer.

King Canute may have ordered the tide to halt and King Xerxes may have ordered his men to whip the waters of the Dardanelles strait for bringing up a storm, but Only King Hussein and Lord O’Malley would contemplate taxing the rain.

If you thought they ran out of ways to tax us you badly misjudged our lawmakers’ creativity. Get ready for their newest invention, the rain tax.

In 2010 the Obama administration’s Environmental Protection Agency ordered Maryland to reduce stormwater runoff into the Chesapeake Bay so that nitrogen levels fall 22 percent and phosphorus falls 15 percent from current amounts. The price tag: $14.8 billion.

And where do we get the $14.8 billion? By taxing so-called “impervious surfaces,” anything that prevents rain water from seeping into the earth (roofs, driveways, patios, sidewalks, etc.) thereby causing stormwater run off. In other words, a rain tax.

Taxing impervious surfaces is a brilliant environmentalist gimmick for penalizing structures. If you pave your driveway, then you’re obstructing the rain and you have to be penalized for it.

The EPA ordered Maryland to raise the money (an unfunded mandate), Maryland ordered its 10 largest counties to raise the money (another unfunded mandate) and, now, each of those counties is putting a local rain tax in place by July 1.

Well, you ask, “How on earth can the government know how much impervious surface I own?” Answer: It’s not on earth, it’s in the sky. Thanks to satellite imagery and geographic information systems, Big Brother can measure your roof and driveway.

Isn’t it great how we got rid of that creepy Bush Administration and its surveillance state that was wasting its time fighting terrorists instead of measuring roofs from space to determine how much money the rain-obstructing criminals have to pay?

OK, once the counties raise this money, how is it spent? The state law is kind of squishy. It can be spent to build and maintain stream and wetland restoration projects. And, of course, a lot of it will go to “monitoring, inspection, enforcement, review of stormwater management plans and permit applications and mapping of impervious surfaces.” In other words, hiring more bureaucrats to administer the rain tax program.

It can also be spent on “public education and outreach” (whatever that means) and on “grants to nonprofit organizations” (i.e. to the greenies who pushed the tax through the various levels of government).

So homeowners are being fined for having roofs overhead with the money being used to create jobs for ecoscammers and funnel money to their groups.

Wouldn’t it be better if we just went to a straight up mafia state like Russia. Then we could dispense with the Rain Taxes and call a shakedown what it is.

Here’s how Montgomery County is spending some of its rain tax:

“(The county) holds workshops and training events to help residents understand how various projects work. Projects such as rain gardens, conservation landscaping, rain barrels and cisterns, drywells and tree planting are then offered to be installed on properties that qualify, based on the County’s assessment.”

So, I’m supposed to pay a rain tax so the county can train me how to plant a tree, which they’ll give me if, in its view, I qualify? Have we all gone mad?

We’ve all gone liberal.

Homeowners are going to pay the rain tax three times. Once, on their homes. A second time because commercial leases force tenants pay the landlord’s property taxes, which the tenants will, then, pass on to their customers. And a third time as church members or supporters of nonprofit hospitals, private schools and charities.

You see, state lawmakers exempted government-owned property from the rain tax but imposed it on religions and nonprofits (which own big roofs and parking lots).

Forget North Carolina. We already have a State Church and it’s fining non-state religions in rain tithes to finance its Green Religion.

Best of all Governor Martin “Rain Tax” O’Malley is contemplating a presidential run.

“I need to be spending a lot more energy and time giving serious consideration and preparation to what — if anything — I might have to offer should I decide to run for president in 2016,” O’Malley said during a wide-ranging interview with editors of The Baltimore Sun.

I’m sure there’s a lot that the Rain Taxer could offer. Like a national Rain Tax. And rain redistribution. The possibilities are endless. So is the tyranny.

  • Toni_Pereira

    At least they didn't bring the Jew tax…yet. Oh Lord, why is that people with scientific credentials are the biggest promoters of obscurantism, nowadays?

    • gee

      Do not give them any ideas.

  • Mary Sue

    This just goes to show that tax idiocy is timeless. Like in Egypt in ancient times, when they literally had inspectors going into the kitchens of private citizens to make sure they were using taxable olive oil for cooking, rather than meat drippings which were not taxed.

    • defcon 4

      Sarcastically speaking: But olive oil is healthier to cook with than meat drippings. It's a matter of public health!

  • Moliminous

    This is nothing new. King Henry VII in the Prince and the Pauper wanted to impose a window tax. That's right… a window tax. Imagine that: a tax for letting in the sunshine.

    When you parse the language, analyze the structure, and discover the syntax, one discovers that what the Democrats are trying to do is tax reason. If you think, you pay a penalty.

    If you feel good, the government feeds and clothes you. If you think, you're fined. Like Mark Twain, I don't make this up; you'll find it in the morning papers reporting on politicians in Washington.

    • Daniel Greenfield

      Considering the price of windows back then, that at least made some kind of sense as a luxury tax. More sense than the door knob tax.

    • Bob

      King George did impose a window tax right here in the colonies. That's why you'll see on many colonial era homes, at least one window that was bricked up in order to reduce the owners tax liability.

      • Larry

        The window tax was a common one right across Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, it wasn't just in the American colonies that it was applied.

  • Moliminous

    On second thought… How come just home-owners? How about all those government buildings, parking lots and garages? How about all those government/union schools? parking lots, fields? How about all the union buildings, parking lots? Seems the government is the primary source of pollution. Government agencies should pay out of existing budgets.

    • Daniel Greenfield

      And then they'll just pass a secondary rain tax in which you pay for the rain tax that the government is paying for.

    • Toni_Pereira

      Not to mention mental pollution.

    • candy

      Who pays for government ,city and state buildings ? Tax payers

    • Fred Johnson

      What you don't realize is that EVERY parcel that has impervious surface will pay the tax… including government structures.

      See how stupid you are being commenting on something you know nothing about??? /facepalm

  • SixDays

    Here in Sweden there are already municipalities that charge tax for rainwater….

    Just waiting for an "air" tax to come.

    • Toni_Pereira

      Your local authorities will force you to wear a nose clip, if you don't pay …

    • Bob

      Since we all exhale CO2, I believe that Al Gore and his disciples are working on that.

      • Nanis

        Even what he (obummer) eats makes him sick.

  • JacksonPearson

    WTF???

    • Nanis

      Than hes going to tax us for having to use the toilet.

      • JacksonPearson

        They're already doing that to us.

  • Toni_Pereira

    No, it's not a joke.

  • JJJ

    Here in TN they started raising the storm water fee 3 years ago. I use to pay $12.00 on month for water at our small, one person office. It is now $112.00 due to the "rain fee".

  • Bob

    The (not so) funny thing is, most people's rooves drain directly onto the ground surrounding their buildings. Those citizens will then be unduely taxed for runoff that they really aren't creating.

    And what about those who live in the western part of the state past the eastern mountain ridges? Don't these areas drain somewhere other than the Bay? Will they be subject to this tax as well?

    • Gary

      Two of the counties that border the Bay aren't even paying the Tax!!

    • Fred Johnson

      Again… you know NOTHING about the subject but think you know everything. Do some RESEARCH and you will see why people pay the tax. Your ASSumption of the water going directly onto the ground is a wrong one too. Lots of people have their rooves piped directly into the storm water system. Even if they don't, the runoff picks up velocity when coming off impervious surface… which eventually spills into a stream and degrades it. I could go on for hours about why stormwater runoff is bad, but my time and words would be wasted on those who will not educate themselves, but would rather rant against a government that is trying to keep their water clean.

      The areas not in the Chesapeake Bay (only 1 county in far western MD) don't have the tax.

  • JacksonPearson

    "Homeowners Targeted With “Rain Tax” for Rain that Falls on their Property"
    That explains it why the British tax collectors never made it back home to England from the Colonies!

    Has anything been learned since then…(A) No!

  • MeSoHornish

    Based on runoff, eh? Finally: trickle-down economics that works!

  • Barbara

    This is part and parcel of UN Agenda 21. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzEEgtOFFlM
    Before you dismiss that as a conspiracy theory, how else do you explain all the ridiculous new environment regulations? Has anyone done a cost -benefit analysis?
    The state of Virginia successfully fought off a similar EPA mandate. Marylanders should look to that court decision for guidance. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/04/cuccinel

  • Mark Musser

    The environmental totalitarian goals of stormwater have been on the books for some time now. It was a battle fought and won by the environmentalists on the ground to take over the land right before the Global Warming air campaign – which is the last battle still being fought. One of the original stormwater gurus of the western world was Alwin Seifert. The Nazi brass called him "wild Alwin." "Wild Alwin" warned the Germany of the 1930's that the nation will become an American Dust Bowl unless they take stormwater runoff seriously. Many of the stormwater ponds that are now seen across the fruited plain in America to slow down stormwater runoff at virtually every building site these days can thank Seifert (and others too) for their very presence. Now, however, it not just the flow of stormwater the greens are worried about, but also what's in it – pollution. With stormwater, there is no end to the potential power that the green movement can amass to itself thanks to the fact that it does indeed rain.

    • Fred Johnson

      Morons like you that speak out of your a$$ without knowing one single fact about the real issue amaze me… I mean I knew idiots this stupid were out there… but WOW!!

      You and Alex Jones sleeping together?

  • candy

    Next up – toilets that measure weight and waste output for a new tax

  • BS77

    Nothing new here….you pay income tax, sales tax, fuel taxes, excise tax, state tax, local taxes, surcharge taxes on air line tickets, hotel rooms and a variety of hidden fees and taxes……a rain tax? In some areas of the country sales taxes are now approaching ten per cent……..Ain't it grand?

  • Ar'nun

    How badly has the pride of Americans been destroyed if we see something like this and don't forceably take our country back?

    • NAHALKIDES

      A lot of us still have the pride, but we don't have the organization, and many would be reluctant to take the steps necessary to curb what may be a permanent Democrat majority. I'd say it's time to start laying the intellectual and organizational groundwork for some sort of rebellion, perhaps in the form of secession, in case the Democratic Left can't be stopped any other way.

    • Fred Johnson

      LOL what a bafoon. Yeah.. yehaw!! Let's go start shooting people because they want to keep our water clean and help save the fish and crabs I love to eat!! Yessireee!!!

      Moron.

  • defcon 4

    Were these taxes imposed w/o any sort of public scrutiny?

    • Fred Johnson

      Of course not. Every step of the way had public comment periods.

  • paul randall

    I suppose letting the Chesapeake Bay turn into a dead sea because of nitrogen and phosphorus pollution would be the way to go. That would be a real money saver.

    • Gary

      How is taxing homeowners going to solve that??

    • Who as

      You're an IDIOT!

      • Fred Johnson

        Actually, you are the idiot. Paul understands the issue, you obviously do not.

    • Fred Johnson

      Good on you. Someone that actually gets it and sees through ignorant authors like this one.

  • jsc221

    The phosphorus and nitrogen that they are worried about come from runoff from fertilized farmland. Taxing something else (paved/roofed property owners) only shifts the expense to parties 100% unaccociated with the problem. Its doubtful if there even is one, considering its the EPA thats mandating this penalty. Typical government nonsense. Lets see how long it is before the money raised in this shakedown is shifted to some other program, scheme, or entitlement (all urgently needed of course!!!!).

    • Fred Johnson

      Sorry, but wrong. SOME of the P and N comes from farmland… the MAJORITY of it comes from single family homes where people put down more fertilizer than they need. Do some reading and get educated instead of believing sensational authors like this one who have their heads up their a$$

  • michael

    And I ask you: does the rain not trickle OFF the roof and into the ground? How then is the roof keeping water out of the ground!

    • Fred Johnson

      Look up stormwater runoff and educate yourself. You will then see why it is a problem.

  • Raymond

    Paint your roofs and driveways green to look like grass

  • myass

    The author is fool. Trying to blame the president for the decisions of local governments.

  • Fred Johnson

    You should stick to radical Islam, because you know absolutely nothing about storm water. Not even worth the effort to educate you as you will remain intentionally ignorant because of your stupidity.

  • 1hunglo1

    This left-liberal-piece-of-shiite O’Malley did a survey to find out what were his chances of winning a presidential election and the results were: less than 1% of those surveyed said they would vote for him. The other 99% said they wished he would take a very long walk on a very short pier.