A long-standing bill that allows UVM fraternity and sorority houses to be exempt from taxes on their properties has been revoked. With this new development, the payments for the 10 fraternity and sorority houses in Burlington could reach an upward sum of $278,120 annually. This added payment could have a severe impact on Greek life at UVM and some houses may be forced to shut down with the cost of maintaining the home reaching an unsustainable sum.
Individuals in favor of reinstating the bill point out that should sororities or fraternities be forced to sell, the home would most likely be purchased by the University or Champlain College, thus rendering them tax exempt once again and defeating any fiscal gains for the state.
On the opposite end of the argument, many legislatures in favor of revoking the bill argue that the tax exemption is unfair to non-Greek students living in Burlington who have to pay taxes.
Several Greek students recently traveled down to Montpelier to visit the senate house and lobby for the bill and many alumni are gathering support as well hoping to change the decision.
There is still time for discussion and changes to take place, as the bill is not set to take effect until July 1, 2017.