Print Friendly HOUSE BILL NO. 528 – Property tax/home exmptn/COLA
HOUSE BILL NO. 528
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H0528..................................by ROBISON, ALEXANDER, BIETER, ET AL
PROPERTY TAX - HOMEOWNER'S EXEMPTION - Amends existing law to provide an
annual cost-of-living adjustment to the homeowner's property tax exemption.
01/28 House intro - 1st rdg - to printing
01/29 Rpt prt - to Rev/Tax
|||| LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO ||||
Fifty-fourth Legislature Second Regular Session - 1998
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
HOUSE BILL NO. 528
BY ROBISON, ALEXANDER, BIETER, BOE, CHASE, JAQUET, JUDD, STOICHEFF AND WATSON
1 AN ACT
2 RELATING TO THE HOMEOWNER'S PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION; AMENDING SECTION 63-602G,
3 IDAHO CODE, TO PROVIDE AN ANNUAL COST-OF-LIVING ADJUSTMENT TO THE
4 HOMEOWNER'S PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION; DECLARING AN EMERGENCY AND PROVIDING
5 RETROACTIVE APPLICATION.
6 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:
7 SECTION 1. That Section 63-602G, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby
8 amended to read as follows:
9 63-602G. PROPERTY EXEMPT FROM TAXATION -- RESIDENTIAL IMPROVEMENTS. (1)
10 During the tax year 1983 and each year thereafter, the first fifty thousand
11 dollars ($50,000) of the market value for assessment purposes of residential
12 improvements, or fifty percent (50%) of the market value for assessment pur-
13 poses of residential improvements, whichever is the lesser, shall be exempt
14 from property taxation. During the tax year 1998 and each year thereaf-
15 ter, the tax exemption provided in this section shall be adjusted for cost-of-
16 living changes as provided in section 63-705, Idaho Code.
17 (2) The exemption allowed by this section may be granted only if:
18 (a) The residential improvements are owner-occupied and used as the pri-
19 mary dwelling place of the owner as of January 1. The residential improve-
20 ments may consist of part of a multidwelling or multipurpose building and
21 shall include all of such dwelling or building except any portion used
22 exclusively for anything other than the primary dwelling of the owner. The
23 presence of an office in an owner-occupied residential property, which
24 office is used for multiple purposes, including business and personal use,
25 shall not prevent the owner from claiming the exemption provided in this
26 section; and
27 (b) The tax commission has certified to the board of county commissioners
28 that all properties in the county which are subject to appraisal by the
29 county assessor have, in fact, been appraised uniformly so as to secure a
30 just valuation for all property within the county; and
31 (c) The owner has certified to the county assessor by April 15 that:
32 (i) He is making application for the exemption allowed by this sec-
34 (ii) That the residential improvements are his primary dwelling
35 place; and
36 (iii) That he has not made application in any other county for the
37 exemption, and has not made application for the exemption on any
38 other residential improvements in the county.
39 (d) For the purpose of this section, the definition of owner shall be the
40 same definition set forth in section 63-701(8), Idaho Code.
41 When an "owner" is any person who as grantor created a revocable
42 trust and named himself or herself as beneficiary of that trust, he or she
43 may provide proof of the revocable trust with an affidavit stating: (i)
1 the name of the grantor; (ii) a statement that the grantor is the benefi-
2 ciary of the trust; (iii) the trust is revocable during the grantor's
3 lifetime; and (iv) the grantor is the owner-occupier of the residential
4 property and uses the property as the primary dwelling place of the owner
5 as of January 1.
6 The affidavit shall include the attaching of the copies of those por-
7 tions of the trust which set forth the grantor, the grantor as benefi-
8 ciary, the revocable character of the trust and the signature page of the
10 (e) Any owner may request in writing the return of all copies of any
11 revocable trust created by the owner that are held by a county assessor,
12 and the copies shall be returned by the county assessor upon submission of
13 the affidavit set forth in paragraph (d) of this subsection in proper
15 (f) For the purpose of this section, the definition of "primary dwelling
16 place" shall be the same definition set forth in section 63-701(9), Idaho
18 (g) For the purpose of this section, the definition of "occupied" shall
19 be the same definition set forth in section 63-701(7), Idaho Code.
20 (3) An owner need only make application for the exemption described in
21 subsection (1) of this section once, as long as all of the following condi-
22 tions are met:
23 (a) The owner has received the exemption during the previous year as a
24 result of his making a valid application as defined in subsection (2)(c)
25 of this section.
26 (b) The owner still occupies the same residential improvements for which
27 he made application.
28 (c) The residential improvements described in subsection (3)(b) of this
29 section are owner-occupied and used as the primary dwelling place of the
30 owner as of January 1.
31 (4) The exemption allowed by this section must be taken before the reduc-
32 tion in taxes provided by sections 63-701 through 63-710, Idaho Code, is
34 (5) The legislature declares that this exemption is necessary and just.
35 (6) Residential improvements having previously qualified for exemption
36 under this section in the preceding year, shall not lose such qualification
37 due to the owner's absence in the current year by reason of active military
38 service in a designated combat zone, as defined in section 112 of the internal
39 revenue code. If an owner fails to timely apply for exemption as required in
40 this section solely by reason of active duty in a designated combat zone, as
41 defined in section 112 of the internal revenue code, and such improvements
42 would have otherwise qualified under this section, then the board of county
43 commissioners of the county in which the residential improvements are located
44 shall refund property taxes, if previously paid, in an amount equal to the
45 exemption which would otherwise have applied.
46 SECTION 2. An emergency existing therefor, which emergency is hereby
47 declared to exist, this act shall be in full force and effect on and after its
48 passage and approval, and retroactively to January 1, 1998.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
This bill would adjust the upper limit for the homeowner exemption, now $50,000, for inflation in the same
way that the qualifying limit for the circuit breaker law is adjusted for the cost of living. The upper limit
has not changed since 1983. Had it been adjusted for inflation it would now be more than $70,000. With
this change, if the cost of living adjustment is 3 per cent, the upper limit would rise to $51,500 for tax year
1998. It would benefit about 20 per cent of homeowners, those who have "topped out" the existing
Had this measure been in effect for 1997 total residential taxes in Idaho would have risen $24.2 million
rather than $25.5 million. If the taxable value on a home rises $1,500 or more, there would be no
reduction in taxes collected on that home by local government. If taxable value did not rise, there would
be a reduction averaging $22.50 for each home that has topped out the $50,000 limit. This varies by
county. Some counties have relatively few homes in that category.
Contact: Rep. Ken Robison
Phone (208) 332-1000
Statement of purpose/fiscal impact