Wide differences in municipal tax rates

11/04/2005 10:00

Municipal tax revenues are expected to amount to approximately 7.3 billion euro in 2005. Local tax rates differ widely from one municipality to another and vary from more than 200 euro per resident in the municipality of Lingewaal to more than 2,000 euro in the island municipality of Schiermonnikoog.

Property tax, waste disposal tax and sewerage tax per resident, 2005

Property tax, waste disposal tax and sewerage tax per resident, 2005

High tax rates in the Randstad region and on the West Frisian Islands

Municipal tax revenues per resident from property tax, waste disposal tax and sewerage charges are high in the Randstad region and on the West Frisian Islands. The estimated revenues of these taxes vary in the range from 1,034 euro per capita in the island municipality of Schiermonnikoog to 181 euro per capita in Lingewaal. Tax revenues are high in prosperous municipalities like Wassenaar, Bloemendaal and Blaricum, where many houses in the higher price brackets are located but, surprisingly, also in various municipalities in the northeast part of the province of Groningen.

Revenues from tourist tax per resident, 2005

Revenues from tourist tax per resident, 2005

Tourist tax

Most municipalities which tend to be visited by large numbers of tourists, impose tourist tax. Particularly in the coastal region including the West Frisian Islands, the east part of the province of Limburg, the province of Drenthe and the Frisian lake district, tourist taxes constitute a sizable part of municipal tax revenues.

Schiermonnikoog has the highest tourist tax income per resident, immediately followed by other West Frisian Islands like Vlieland, Ameland and Terschelling. There is a simple explanation for this: Schiermonnikoog, with an inconsiderable thousand inhabitants, is the smallest municipality in the Netherlands and witnesses a massive annual influx of tourists in summer.

Estimated revenue municipal taxes by number of municipal residents, 2005

Estimated revenue municipal taxes by number of municipal residents, 2005

High revenues in large municipalities due to property tax

In municipalities with 100 thousand and more residents, the revenue of municipal taxes averages 534 euro per capita. Municipalities with 20 to 50 thousand inhabitants impose an average 412 euro per capita. Despite high tax revenues in the scarcely populated West Frisian Island municipalities, tax revenues are lowest in municipalities where the population does not exceed 20 thousand, i.e. an average 399 euro per resident.

Property tax plays an important part in this respect. Property tax revenues in large municipalities average 260 euro per capita, municipalities in the middle brackets average 196 euro and small municipalities 186 euro per capita.

Parking tax rates are distinctly higher (on average 51 euro per resident) in large towns than in medium-sized (16 euro per capita) and small towns (3 euro per capita). The average is affected by a large number of smaller towns which do not impose parking tax at all.

Ed Verburg and Gijs Batenburg