CENTER FOR STUDY OF ECONOMICS

Rating: 4.93 stars   29 reviews

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Location: 1518 Walnut St Ste 604 Philadelphia PA 19102 USA

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2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 25-1384471
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Rating: 5 stars  

The advocacy of Land Value Taxation through the Center for the Study of Economics; is the Morally Right Issue.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

The Center for the Study of Economics; has provided the necessary
tools for me , to advocate for "Environmental and Economic Sustainability" at the county and national levels.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

by observing the successes of existing municipalities.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None.

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Rating: 5 stars  

The problem, all over the world is land. In most countries, perhaps all, most of the land is owned by a minority of the people, who use their ownership to deny access to the majority. CSE is the only organization, worldwide, that devotes its efforts to overcoming this problem. Seventeen cities in Pennsylvania, and many cities worldwide, tax buildings less and land values more, which is the solution to this worldwide problem. By shifting taxes off buildings, on to the value of land, the cost of holding the land idle in anticipation of value increases is increased, encouraging productive use of the land and, by lowering taxes on buildings, encourages the improvement of buildings. A double whammy! At no cost! Land values are created by the community through investment in schools, roads and other infrastructure. It is equitable therefore for the community to get a return on its investment by taxing the land value it creates. Building values are the result of people's investment. Reducing taxes on buildings encourages maintainence and more building. All in all. a great idea and a cause that cries out for more support and understanding

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

The mission of CSE is to encourage municipalities and states to use Land Value Taxation (lvt). lvt is taxing the value of land as opposed to taking income, sales and buildings. Land is the gift of nature and contains no labor. A tax on land has no deadweight. The other taxes mentioned are all on labor and, as such, are a deadweight on the economy. By shifting taxes to land values, people keep more of what they earn and either spend it or savew it. Either way it helps the economy. The value of land is created by the investment of the community in roads, schools and other infrastructure. Therefore it is equitable to tax the value of land to give the community a return on its investment.

Shifting taxes off labor, on to land shifts taxes "up" and "in". It shifts taxes up because all valuable land is owned by wealthy individuals or corporations. Certainly the poor, who pay most of the sales tax, own no valuable land. Homeowners, by definition, own only the land under their houses. They would pay a modest land tax.

It shifts taxes in because the most valuable land is in the cities. Shifting to a land tax will take pressure off the clean and green countryside.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've personally experienced the results of this organization. My home town, Lanesborough gets only 40% of its revenue from taxing land values. CSE has convinced 20 municipalities to use it. Two, Aliquippa and Claairton get 90% of their municipal revenue from taxing land vaues and one, Altoona gets 100% of its municipal revenu from taxing land values.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I had to make changes in this organization, I would hire more staff so that we could effectively reach more potential users. We have only a small endowment. We have one full time employee, the Executive Director, and three part time employees. That's all we can afford.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

The Center for the Study of Economics, in Philadelphia, PA is the world leader in helping communities convert from the property tax to a tax on land value exempting all buildings such as homes , offices , factories, stores, warehouses, and farm buildings, saving building owners millions and millions of dollars in property taxes, by gradually, over several years, shifting taxs off of buildings and onto land, thus encouraging investment in buildings and labor and discouraging holding valuable land idle.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

CSE has been the world leader in helping local governments to be a practical help to its community through constuctive tax policy reform. Most local governments tax the wrong people for the wrong reasons; by following the advice of CSE they can limit the harm and expand the good that they do for the community as a whole. What Milton Freidman called the "least bad of all taxes" not only funds local government, but it actually influences investors to help out the community with additional investment.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Through many years.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Raise more funds.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

What makes the Center for the Study of Economics (CSE) special is that it addresses root causes of poverty and economic problems - and its policies are being successfully applied in about 20 jurisdictions in the U.S. so far.

CSE takes the approach that is also advocated by eight Nobel prize economists, who point out the importance of incentives in having a healthy economy, so they recognize that in most cities an important economic problem is that the tax incentives are backwards, because the kinds of taxes that fall on labor, buildings, sales, or production discourage job creation, affordable housing, and affordable products and services. Instead, in the cities that have adopted CSE's policies, they've been gradually lowering taxes on buildings and also lowering some other local taxes, and gradually moving toward just taxing the location value of land, which no person produced, so it is the only tax that is not a tax on production.

Studies show that this leads to more job creation, more affordable housing, and a healthier local economy.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've seen the practical results of CSE's policies in the cities that are already applying them.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would provide it with more staff and more funding, as well as finding more ways to let people know about its policies so that they can also benefit from them.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

As a professional community planner I know of no other tool that can be as effective in creating equitable, sustainable communities. I am also an urban designer and architect, and although the physical structure and quality of design are essential to the health of a place, the basic fairness and integrity of the economy are the bedrock.
The Center for the Study of Economics has consistently done the emperical research and the advoccy to make the right things happen to reduce destructive speculation and encourage true community improvement, revitalization and vitalization. The word, the message and the evidence must be shared, and the Center is the one organization ready to do that!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have been following the successes of CSE for over a dozen years and have seen the effects.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Just spread the word and increase the capacity of the organization to do just that.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

This organization is actually trying to eliminate poverty! Imagine walking down the street in any major American city and seeing no homeless people, no beggars asking for money. The practice of taxing land according to its location value could bring this about. This is because the land is, morally and economically speaking, the property of all the people, whereas buildings are, morally and economically, the property of the builders of them. So taxing the location value of land is simply the community taking what truly belongs to the community.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Pittsburgh, where for several decades land values were taxed more than building values, and there was very little vacant land in the downtown area.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

increase the size of the full-time staff.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

What is attractive about the Georgist economic paradigm is that it comports not only with all the textbook principles of sound economic theory, but it reflects as well a system of justice that is easily understood. The idea that we own what we make with our hands or minds and that which is given to us by nature is the birthright of all, and should be shared by all, restores to society a simple and clear system of justice. The Center for the Study of Economics is effective because it has the skill to use computers and available data to show how these ideas can be effectuated. Until the advent of computer power, such ideas needed to rely on rhetorical argument alone. And they were largely dormant for a century. This is now changing. And fast! I am proud to be a part of this movement.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have served not only as a board member, but have led conferences, spoken on countless occasions, researched and written widely, and have been closely involved in the advocacy of the Georgist idea. I've seen enormous growth in its interest and acceptance in the twenty years that I've been involved.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would find more means to solicit financial support for its work. Most people, if they understood its program, would support it whole-heartedly.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I heard of the Center for the Study of Economics and its sibling the Henry George Foundation of America when I was a teenager. I had read Henry George's "Progress and Poverty," and been persuaded; my father spotted an ad in "The New Republic" from CSE/HGFA. I've been in touch ever since. The CSE has been helpful in doing studies and making presentations, causing over a dozen towns in Pennsylvania to switch from a conventional property tax to a two-rate tax. In some cases, they also cut wage taxes. It isn't obvious to most people why this matters. Feeding the hungry is clearly good, but reforming taxes matters in the long run because it enables people to feed themselves. We should tax land, which is not produced by human effort, instead of buildings that people work to erect, and instead of the wages that they earn. The CSE educates people about this, and performs studies on the results when this kind of tax reform is at least partially implemented. The CSE is very cost effective; on a budget of about $100,000 per year, it has helped transfer millions of taxes off the backs of wage-earners, tenants, and homeowners onto landholders, who are on teh average richer.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Getting Georgist tax reform on the agenda in a number of towns, educating councilmen, assessors, neighborhood association leaders, clergymen, and others about what should be done, and why it matters.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would make it much larger; I would have hundreds of thousands of people informed about its work, and demanding Georgist tax reform from their elected leaders. There actually was a situation like that in the late 19th century.

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Review from Guidestar