Property Tax exemption party!

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Brenda Konkel is putting out the word of a “Property Tax Exemption Victory Party.”

No not a political party. A real party, a shindig, a ho-down.

Today at the Brink Lounge (701 E Washingotn) from 5-7:30 p.m.

I assume the party is in response to the property tax exemptions granted by the state budget, but it may also be related to a number of exemption claims that were filed last year with the city. Of course the two would invariably related, so…I’m going to leave it the experts on this one.

But it is an important issue and it highlights a crucial aspect of state tax policy. The budget passed by the Democrats last week in essence raised property taxes by allowing municipalities to raise the tax ceiling to 3%, up from 2%. However, the Dems made sure to outline important exemptions, including for low-income housing and housing for the elderly. Those living in a retirement home unit worth less than 160% of the “average fair market value of improved parcels of residential property located in the county” would be covered. The mark for that in Dane County, for instance, would be $392,000.

Of course, these are exemptions that were just signed into law, which means that Madisonians who are looking for property tax rebates from 2008 may not have qualified. Or did they? Maybe I’ll have to go to the party to find out.

The Cap Times has more on property taxes in its analysis of the state budget today. The mayor’s office expressed delight at the exemptions kept for non-profits and low-income housing providers. The big question asked was what can landlords of low income housing do with the tax-exempt money they earn from their tenants. The budget answered that question: anything. Money earned from low income housing is tax exempt.

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