With Croatia’s population declining for
decades, its government ought to pursue policies that encourage growth. Instead
it pursued a policy that threatened to further push Croatians out with the 2017
passage of a tax on privately owned property, and since 90% of Croatians own
their own homes, the new tax threatened to hurt the rich and poor alike.
Lipa Taxpayers Association refused to stand by and allow this property tax to
hit an already troubled economy, so it enlisted one of the country’s most
influential economists and launched an award-winning campaign against the tax.
Emphasizing Croatia’s already crippling tax burden, its efforts turned public
opinion sharply against the tax in a matter of months, resulting in over 146,000 petition signatures, media coverage in more than 100 news outlets,
and a full repeal of the property tax. Following the repeal public opposition
to taxes has remained high, with the government unable to introduce any new
taxes since. And while Croatians may still be overtaxed, they are grateful
that Lipa’s success means they won’t be sending payments to the government just
to live in their own homes.