Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Cotuit

Killington, New Hampshire?

27 posts in this topic

Central Vermont town eyes joining New Hampshire

1/9/2004

KILLINGTON, Vt. -- Tired of sending $20 million a year in taxes to the state and getting $1 million in state aid in return, officials in this ski resort town are considering leaving Vermont and joining New Hampshire.

"It kind of reminds us of Colonial days," said Town Manager David Lewis. "The Colonies were being faced with the Stamp Act, the Tea Act, the Sugar Act. England wasn't giving them any rights. They were treating the Colonies as just a revenue source."

Killington's frustration is similar, Lewis said. "We have no rights, we have no justice, no representation," he said. "We're being used as a cash cow to support others."

Killington, population 1,092, shares a state representative with three other towns. It's part of Rutland County, which has three state Senators.

The mountain town has no nearby harbors into which to throw tea, but it has a state with no income tax and no sales tax lying 25 miles to the east. Some in Killington say that would provide relief from their current situation.

Lest anyone think it's just a bunch of Howard Dean supporters trying to infiltrate the New Hampshire presidential primary to back their former governor, Killington usually votes Republican.

Killington officials say the town's restaurants, inns and other businesses send $10 million a year to Montpelier in meals, rooms and sales taxes. But even more galling to the town is a statewide property tax imposed in 1997 to fund schools.

The town won a Superior Court order that called the state's method of assessing local properties "arbitrary and capricious." But the state Supreme Court reversed that decision.

The secession idea, which the Select Board is considering putting before voters on Town Meeting Day in March, was first reported Wednesday in a Killington weekly, The Mountain Times.

While the idea of secession might have some appeal in town, it's expected to be about as popular at the Vermont Statehouse as American independence was with King George III.

"This is symbolic, clearly," said Secretary of State Deborah Markowitz. "Absent an armed insurrection type of thing, there isn't anything a town can do to secede. A town is a construction of the state and exists at the pleasure of the Legislature."

Lewis said he expected if the Legislature rejects the town's bid to leave, it may turn to the Congress or the U.S. Supreme Court. As in, if at first you don't secede, try, try again.

In New Hampshire, one state official said it's nice to be asked, but wasn't making any promises.

"I don't know how to react to that," said David Scanlan, the deputy New Hampshire secretary of state. "I would be flattered if they'd want to join New Hampshire."

Some Killington residents are likely to take up the role of the Tories, or loyalists, during the American Revolution.

"Come on, that's crazy talk," said Steven Kelly of Killington about the secession plan.

"With me working in retail, I wouldn't have to charge anybody tax," he said. "But I'd have to say I live in New Hampshire. What's up with that? I love having a Vermont address. I'm proud of it. It's a cool place to live."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Sounds like a good story but seceding land from one state to another is almost impossible now without an endless court battle. I'm sure NH would love it though!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vermont town votes to rejoin Granite State

By LORNA COLQUHOUN

Union Leader Correspondent

KILLINGTON, Vt.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Seems amazing they could do something like move from one state to another.

They can't really. It would take an act of Congress and approval by both Vermont and New Hampshire. Vermont doesn't want to lose that tax money and Congress is not going to set any precedents. Suddenly every wealthy town in the country would be trying to secede to a state with the lowest taxes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


11,000 in property taxes? Please tell me this guy lives on a huge lot or something....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does anyone know the pre-war boundary between these two states? This situation is intriguing!

Vermont was carved out of land that was claimed by New York and New Hampshire. I don't think there was ever any official boundary between NY & NH before the creation of Vermont. The area that is now Killington (not sure if the town dates back to revolutionary times) was probably claimed by both NH & NY at some point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have never been skiing actually. But anyway I wonder if this is going to cause other towns or cities to want to leave their state and join NH. OH MAN. Just imagine if Boston left MA to Join NH. LoL :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If Killington can go back to New Hampshire, than Toledo can go back to Michigan. LOL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep. There ended up being a war between Ohio & Michigan over the Toledo strip. We lost Toledo, but we gained the entire Upper Peninsula from it. In fact, I've seen letters from like the 1800s that are addressed as Toledo, Mich.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I don't... Killington is in the middle of the state.. If it became a part of New Hampshire (Not gonna happen, anyways) than Vermont would be completely surrounding a part of New Hampshire... Very stupid in my opinion. It's like Italy surrounds San Marino and Rome surrounds Vatican City. Annoying, in my opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very stupid in my opinion.

I agree, it's never gonna happen anyway.

Welcome to the forum by the way. I scan the Burlington Free Press every so often to find stuff to post here, but not living in Vermont, I never really know what to look for. If you come across anything, feel free to post it here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Killington explores New Hampshire union

By David Tirrell-Wysocki | Associated Press | July 14, 2004

CONCORD, N.H. Killington, Vt., officials who want their town to become part of New Hampshire believe they saw a good omen Tuesday on their way to offer their plan to Gov. Craig Benson.

As they waited in traffic in their official town car, a New Hampshire state trooper pulled alongside and gave them a thumbs up. Then he rolled down his window and gave directions to the Statehouse a few blocks away.

"He knew why we were here," Selectboard member Walter Findeisen said. "It was a great welcome."

They were in Concord to give Benson a copy of their town meeting resolution denouncing Vermont's taxes and authorizing them to petition New Hampshire to join the Granite State.

The group met privately with Benson for a few minutes before telling reporters the ski resort community is being gouged and would save money by joining New Hampshire.

Benson said he told the delegation he knew Killington was a special place, and talked up New Hampshire's low taxes and high rankings in livability and health and business climate.

"I'm flattered that people that live outside the state of New Hampshire would want to join a great state," Benson said. "We have a lot to offer."

To leave Vermont, Killington's request would have to be approved by Congress and legislatures in both states. Benson said he does not know whether it would pass in New Hampshire, and avoided saying whether he would support it.

Killington residents are unhappy with Vermont's 1997 education financing law, which raised property taxes in towns such as Killington that are considered property-wealthy.

While the Killington representatives visited, several New Hampshire communities upset at the way their state pays for education were filing a challenge in New Hampshire Supreme Court.

Some communities are upset at having to send part of their property tax revenue to the state. Others argue they are not getting enough in return.

The Killington group pointed to an analysis showing residents and businesses would benefit from New Hampshire's lower property taxes and lack of sales and personal income taxes. The study concluded Killington could save $9 million to $10 million a year in taxes.

Town Manager David Lewis said Benson also gave them some hope.

"I think the governor was extremely receptive," he said. he said.

He said Vermont's Legislature has not taken the Killington sentiment seriously.

"They spent more time on an April Fool's resolution than they did looking at Kil- lington's issues," Lewis said.

From Burlington Free Press

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This whole leaving Vermont because of the education tax is stupid. NH is well on it's way to implementing a similar tax structure. If Killington were to join NH, they would end up with the same tax issues. Then what? Are they gonna try to join Maine?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If they're so upset about it, I think they should find a rational way to work it out. But I mean, come on. Seceding from a state and joining another? It's just.. Ugh. So stupid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't want to pay higher taxes myself, but come on, it's not like these people can't afford it (well I'm sure there are some people in KIllington who aren't mega-rich, but they are likely not the ones crying succession). Public education is one place where this country should be more socialists. It is not right that in a country as rich as ours that children should be subjected to a lesser education as a result of an accident of birth. We should be coming together as a society to give all children an equal footing. Once they become adults I can listen to arguments about people having to make it on their own. Our education funding formulas in New England are unfair to children, and don't work. Maybe Killington is being unfairly burdened, but it is childish for them to in effect take their ball and leave. All this noise of sucession could be better focused on addressing the issues that are creating the town's tax burden.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They can't really. It would take an act of Congress and approval by both Vermont and New Hampshire. Vermont doesn't want to lose that tax money and Congress is not going to set any precedents. Suddenly every wealthy town in the country would be trying to secede to a state with the lowest taxes.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

No i thought that too but it turns out there is some sort of loop hole were they dont need vermonts approval, its somthing about 98% of the town voting yes or somthing like that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Article IV, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution:

New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress.

This doesn't explicitly cover the situation in question, but I bet both Congress and the courts would interpret it to require the consent of both state legislatures to any change in boundaries.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.