Hilden The fee remained unchanged for three years. From 2022, the city wants to earn around 15,000 euros more per year. That is not a real increase, but only an inflation adjustment for the years 1998 to 2021, it is said from the town hall.
In the main committee, all political groups quickly came to an agreement without a debate. As proposed by the administration, the dog tax is to be increased from January 1, 2022. Therefore, the decision in the city council on December 14th is only a matter of form.
More than 3200 dog owners will have to pay more taxes for their four-legged friends from next year. Also Mayor Claus Pommer for his Labrador dog Zora. Instead of 114 then 120 euros a year.
For two dogs, 150 euros per animal will be charged from 2022 (+12 euros), for three dogs 162 euros per bello (+12 euros). The city then charges 960 euros (+48 euros) for a so-called dangerous dog, and 1200 euros per animal (+60 euros) for two dangerous dogs.
Currently (as of May 21, 2021) there are 3221 dogs registered in Hilden. The last dog census in Hilden is now five years ago. In 2016, 181 dogs were newly registered with the tax office. The city does not carry out this action every year. But when it did, it was a success every time – from the point of view of the city administration.
In 2020 and 2021, the city expects 380,000 euros in income from the dog tax. For the Tax Payers Association of North Rhine-Westphalia, the dog tax is a red rag. Abolish it, demanded chairman Rik Steinheuer in June for “Dog Day” – and could be sure of the applause of many dog owners.
Steinheuer argues that many people bought a dog during the corona pandemic. He gives social support, for many belongs to the family. In the past, dogs were a luxury, and the dog tax was a luxury tax, so to speak. “There can be no question of that nowadays.” In addition, the dog tax is levied arbitrarily, criticizes the NRW Taxpayers’ Association. This is shown by the comparison in North Rhine-Westphalia: The range for a dog ranges from 24 euros a year in Lienen to 180 euros in Hagen.
“Anyone who thinks that the income from the dog tax was used to remove the legacy left by four-legged friends on the streets and in parks, to set up Fiffi-bag dispensers or to set up dog walking trails, is wrong,” says Steinheuer and emphasizes: “The dog tax is just supposed to be money rinse in the city bag. But it is nothing more than a trivial tax that no longer has a place in a modern tax system. “
When it comes to the history of dog taxes, Steinheuer is not entirely wrong. At the beginning of the 19th century, Offenbach am Main wanted to top up its city coffers with the dog tax and pay off war debts. Sachsen-Coburg wanted to curb the number of stray dogs and reduce the risk of rabies. And Prussia’s King Friedrich Wilhelm III. introduced the dog tax as a luxury tax: only those who could really afford it financially should get a dog.
By the way, dogs that were used for professional practice were usually tax-free. That’s why there is no cat tax. For a long time, cats were considered to be purely farm animals that kept the house and yard free of mice, rats and other pests. Therefore she did not want to tax the authorities.
The city administration Hilden sees the dog tax a little differently than the taxpayers’ association. The dog tax is a so-called avoidance and regulatory tax. It is intended to help keep the number of four-legged friends within reasonable limits – especially in densely populated Hilden (2149 inhabitants per square kilometer). There are always conflicts here because sidewalks and public green spaces are misused by dog owners as dog toilets. If every registered dog in Hilden produces an average of 150 grams of faeces per day, 3221 four-legged friends add a good 970 kilos a day.