Alanna Hartzok, M.A.
P.O. Box 328
Scotland, PA, USA 17254
Web: www.course.earthrights.net www.earthrights.net
Founder and Co-Director, Earth Rights Institute
Author: The Earth Belongs to Everyone
Online course developer: Land Rights and Land Value Capture
General Secretary, International Union for Land Value Taxation
Global Outreach Coordinator, Robert Schalkenbach Foundation
UN NGO Representative, ECOSOC
Alanna Hartzok is Co-Director of Earth Rights Institute, a civil society organization working for economic justice and peaceful resolution of conflicts. Specific approaches include ecological village development and “earth rights policies” for fair land tenure and public finance from a local-to-global framework. Under contract with the UN HABITAT’s Global Land Tool Network she developed an online course and training program that now has over 900 people enrolled from 95 countries. The website is here: www.course.earthrights.net
Her book – The Earth Belongs to Everyone - received the Radical Middle Book Award. Chapters include: Democracy, Earth Rights and the Next Economy; Sharing Our Common Heritage; Land for People, Not for Profit; Financing Local to Global Public Goods; Women, Earth and Economic Power; Restructuring Economic Relationships; and Economics of War and Peace.
In 2011 she received the International Earth Day Award from the Earth Society Foundation. Her 2001 E.F. Schumacher Lecture was published as Democracy, Earth Rights and the Next Economy. That same year she was a candidate for Congress in the Ninth District of Pennsylvania.
In 1993 she initiated tax reform legislation and worked with state Senator Terry Punt and his staff to guide it through Pennsylvania legislative hearings to nearly unanimous passage of Senate Bill 211, signed by Governor Thomas Ridge as Act 108 in November of 1998.
Her published articles on tax reform are used by legislators in the states of Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey and New York. Her articles are referenced in the literature of the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) in California, a recent issue of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Review, Dialogues, a publication of the Canada West Foundation, and in several books, including the Worldwatch Institute book by David Roodman, The Natural Wealth of Nations and Creating a Sustainable World, an anthology edited by Trent Schroyher and Tom Golodik. She is one of several people featured in Planet Champions: Adventures in Saving the World - New Paths to Peace, Prosperity & Human Rights, authored by Jack Yost.
Speaking Engagements (partial list)
- Land and Poverty Conference, World Bank, Washington, DC
- Eastern Economics Association Conference, New York, on Alaska Permanent Fund and Building Local Based Economies.
- Congress of Evolutionaries, San Francisco, on Sacred Rule Economics preceded by California/Oregon Earth Rights Democracy lecture tour.
- Warsaw, Poland, Oct. 15 – 16, 2009 was one of 17 presenters at UN Habitat Global Land Tool Network regional conference on “Financing affordable housing and infrastructure in cities: towards innovative land and property taxation system.” Held under the patronage of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Republic of Poland.
- Presentation to 200 people from 41 countries on theme of Economics of Peace on September 20, 2009 the Learning Day of the 4-day Summit of the Global Alliance for Ministries and Departments of Peace sponsored by Rasur Foundation, Academy for Peace of Costa Rica, and the government of Costa Rica.
- Huairou Commission and UN Habitat consultative session, Nairobi, Kenya.
- Eastern Economics Association Conference, Economists for Peace and Security Panel, theme: "Economics of War and Peace"
- Delivered 12 lectures and several media interviews in four cities of Australia on the Earth Rights Democracy lecture tour, May 2006
- Chautauqua Institution, audience of 600
- Congressional Black Caucus Forum on Energy in West Africa, Washington, DC
- Thirteenth Channing Lecture
- Eastern Economics Association Conference, New York City
- Various venues including radio in Bayelsa State, Nigeria
- Christianity and Human Rights Conference, Birmingham, Alabama
- World Urban Forum, Barcelona, Spain
- International Union for Land Value Taxation Conf., Madrid, Spain
- Sustainability Conference, Wilson College, Chambersburg, PA
- American Business Women¹s Association
- Eastern Economic Association 30th Annual Conference
- Land: Claim of the Community Conference, Dublin, Ireland
- Guest Lecturer, Rensselaer Polytechnic University, New York
- Russell Sage College, NY
- US Institute for Ecological Economics Conference, NY
- World Commission for Sustainable Development Conference
- UN Radio worldwide broadcast in six languages
- E. F. Schumacher Lecture, Amherst College
- Six days of sessions and meetings in Dominican Republic
- Several recent Tax Policy Alternatives forums in Pennsylvania
- Financing for Development NGO sessions at United Nations
- Sharing Our Common Heritage, Mansfield College, Univ.of Oxford, UK
- Global Green Party (Milenio Verde) in Oaxaca, Mexico
- Towards Sustainable Taxation/Progressive Forum, London, UK
- Presentation with Global Peoples Assembly in Bangkok, Thailand
- Six NGO Forum sessions at UN Habitat II Conference in Istanbul
- Pennsylvania Environmental Coalition
- Pennsylvania Legislative Committee Hearings
- Hearing in the House of Delegates, Charleston, West Virginia
- University of Scranton
- Harvard Club of New York
- Fairleigh Dickinson University
- Third Wave Conference at Wilson College, Chambersburg, PA
- Pennsylvania Statewide Green Party Organizing Meeting
- Third Global Structures Convocation, Washington, DC
- World Citizens Assembly/CAMDUN, New York
- Jerome Levy Economics Institute at Bard College, New York
- United Nations 49th Annual DPI/NGO Conference
- Economics of War and Peace
Presented at the Economists for Peace and Security Session, Eastern Economic Association Conference, February 23, 2007.
Summary: Elaborating upon a series of Four Diagrams, this paper first describes a simple economy whereby basic needs are secured via fair access to land and natural resources, then articulates the root injustice built into the neoclassical economics paradigm which leads to the private appropriation of the economic surplus by an elite few from which emerges the military-industrial-financial complex and an imperialistic U.S. foreign policy. The fourth graph depicts a new role for democratic governance – the capture of “rent” for the benefit of the people as a whole via a type of public finance reform which simultaneously lifts taxes from those who actively contribute to the production of wealth. “Pay for what you take (from the gifts of nature and desirable locations), not what you make” succinctly describes the basis for what the author calls “earth rights democracy.” Several working examples of this policy are presented.
- Citizens Dividends and Oil Resource Rents
A Focus on Alaska, Norway, and Nigeria
This paper was presented in the U.S. Basic Income Guarantee Network (USBIG) track of the Eastern Economic Association 30th Annual Conference held February 20 - 22, 2004 in Washington, DC.
Abstract: Citizens of Alaska have been receiving individual dividend checks from an oil rent trust fund since 1982. Norway's citizens receive substantial social services and invest oil rents in a permanent fund for the future. Nigeria has yet to establish a similar fund for its oil revenue stream. This paper explores the oil rent institutions of Alaska, Norway and Nigeria with a focus on these questions: Are citizen dividends from oil rent funds currently or potentially a source of substantial basic income? Are oil rent funds the best source for citizen dividends or should CDs be based on other types of resource rents? The paper recommends full use of information and communication technologies for transparency in extractive resource industries, that resource rent from non-renewable resources should be invested in socially and environmentally responsible ways and primarily in the needed transition to renewable energy based economies, and that oil and other non-renewable resource rent funds should transition towards capturing substantial resource rents from surface land site values (ground rent) and other permanent and sustainable sources of rent for possible distribution of citizen dividends.
- Democracy, Earth Rights, and the Next Economy
Twenty-First Annual E.F. Schumacher Lecture, Amherst College, October 2001
Summary: Presented to an audience of 600 at Amherst College as an E.F. Schumacher Lecture and now available as a 38-page publication, this gives a dramatic historical perspective of Western land tenure systems, clarifies a deep ethical foundation for land and natural resource ownership, and suggests several practical policy approaches which can secure common heritage resources for the benefit of all. The lecture explores the following topics: Human Rights to the Earth; The Enclosures; Early Christian Teachings; John Locke and the Crack in the Liberty Bell; Thaddeus Stevens and the Civil War; U.S. Imperialism; Earth Rights Policy and New Institutions; Envisioning the Next Economy.
- The Alaska Permanent Fund: A Model of Resource Rents for Public Investment and Citizen Dividends
Published in the Spring 2002 issue of Geophilos, a publication of the Land Research Trust. It was also one of the five winning essays of the There Are Alternatives Project of the McKeever Institute of Economic Policy Analysis.
Summary: Wars are often fought over the ownership and control of land and natural resources. Inequitable ownership and wasteful, unsustainable use of the earth's resources are root causes of both the unjust wealth gap between the rich and the poor and the depletion and collapse of our natural resource base. This paper describes the form and function of the Alaska Permanent Fund as a model governmental institution for collection and distribution of natural resource rents, particularly oil, and makes suggestions for improvement of the Fund. It also presents an analysis of fundamental issues regarding natural resource and territorial claims and urges the establishment of a Global Resource Agency to collect and distribute transnational resource revenues.
- Financing Local to Global Public Goods: An Integrated Green Tax Shift Perspective
Presented at the Global Institute for Taxation Conference on Fundamental Tax Reform co-sponsored by Price Waterhouse Coopers and St. John's University, New York, September 30, 1999 and published in Taxation Alternatives for the 21st Century Proceedings of the 1999 Conference. This paper was among those distributed to the US Congress.
Summary: This paper details a number of successful practices and work-in-progress on green tax shift policies which harness incentives for efficient, equitable, and sustainable wealth production and distribution. Research is cited which shows the impressive potential of green tax reform to help solve major social, economic and environmental problems facing our global civilization. Additionally, presented is an integrated local-to-global public finance framework based on green taxation principles and policies.
For complete paper: http://www.earthrights.net/docs/financing.html
For two page summary: http://www.earthrights.net/docs/financing.html
- Land for People, Not for Profit
Published in Green Revolution, Vol.56/No. 4, 1999 and also published on the Bulletin Board website of United Nations Center for Human Settlements' Global Campaign for Secure Tenure.
Summary: This essay makes a clear distinction between the benefits derived from secure title to land and the market distortions caused when land is used as a commodity for speculation. It briefly explores historical antecedents to arrangements of land tenure and title, taxation and banking systems. Finally, it articulates the rational for land value taxation policy, as recommended by the UN Center for Human Settlements Habitat II Action Agenda.
- Land Value Taxation And Resource Rent Approach To Financing For Development
Policy Paper Submitted by the International Union for Land Value Taxation to the United Nations Financing for Development Preparatory Process at the NGO Hearings Week, November 2000
Excerpt: Public finance policy can be structured to enhance both private sector economic activity and public sector services. A fundamental reform in tax policy can optimize incentives for a productive market economy while also providing money for education, health care, roads and other infrastructure. Such reform promotes a different kind of market system whereby wealth is fairly distributed and basic needs for all are met.
- Pennsylvania's Success with Local Property Tax Reform: The Split Rate Tax
Published in The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, April 1997. Presented at Jerome Levy Economics Institute at Bard College.
Summary: Twenty municipalities in Pennsylvania are pioneering an innovative approach to local tax reform that harnesses market incentives for urban renewal. Opting for the so-called 'two-rate' or 'split-rate' property tax, these cities are lowering taxes on buildings, thereby encouraging improvements and renovations, while raising the tax on land values, thus encouraging good site use while discouraging land speculation to maintain land affordability. The resulting infill development as indicated by increased building permits means downtown jobs, efficient use of urban infrastructure, an improved housing stock, and less urban sprawl.
- Pennsylvania Farmers and the Split Rate Tax
Published in Land Value Taxation: The Equitable and Efficient Source of Public Finance, an anthology edited by Kenneth C. Wenzer, published by M.E. Sharpe, Inc., New York, 1999
Summary: Evidence from this research paper suggests that shifting property taxes away from farm buildings and improvements and towards the recapturing of land values back to the community would maintain farm land affordability and significantly enhance incentives for viable sustainable agriculture in Pennsylvania.
- Financing Planet Management: Sovereignty, World Order and the Earth Rights Imperative
First published in 1994 by the Robert Schalkenbach Foundation., New York , NY
Excerpt: To have peace on earth, we must work to create the conditions for peace in our own towns and cities. If we would revitalize our urban habitats by improving schools and libraries, creating livelihoods and affordable housing, and maintaining safe and beautiful parks and playgrounds, then we must urge our city council members to collect the ground rent of land to finance public services and greatly reduce or eliminate most other forms of taxation. If the politics of the planet are to be based on fairness rather than on force, then equal rights to earth must become the guiding principle, the sovereign, supreme rule. The fundamental human right which now needs to be affirmed is this:
The Earth is the Birthright of All People.
California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco
Canadian Institute of Psychosynthesis, Montreal
Institute of European Studies, Vienna
M. A., University of West Georgia
B. A., Ohio Wesleyan University