Board of Equalization Member George Runner expressed his support Monday for a Senate bill authored by Sen. Steve Knight.
On Feb. 19, state Senator Steve Knight, R-Antelope Valley, introduced legislation that would extend the refund period for disabled veterans to receive property tax exemption.
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Under existing state law, veterans who receive a 100 percent disability rating from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs may be eligible for a property tax exemption, starting on the first day of their disability.
Because there may be an extended period of time between the date of a veteran’s disability and their approval by the VA, the law allows veterans to claim a refund for up to four years in back taxes paid.
SB 1113 would extend that period from four to eight years to accommodate veterans who may have to wait more than four years to receive their disability certification.
It would be a win-win situation, Knight said, because veterans would receive their refund and the VA would be able to take care of their backlogs.
The bill is also an easy way to address complaints from veterans who did not receive their full refund, Knight said.
Runner called it outrageous, “that a veteran can be identified as being disabled, but not get their property tax.”
“These brave men and women have sacrificed greatly for our country and should not be penalized by a slow bureaucratic process,” he said in a press release.
The disability certification process can take up to 10 years, Runner said.
But, the refund period was not extended indefinitely in the bill, because it would be cost prohibitive.
“We thought that by doubling the time, it would capture most of the people who are going through the process,” Runner said.
The full Board of Equalization will consider sponsoring SB 1113 at their March 25 hearing.
“Veterans wounded in the defense of our country have earned more than our appreciation and respect,” Knight said in a press release. “I am proud to author SB 1113 to ensure they have access to the tax benefits they deserve.”
For more information about SB 1113 and to read the full text of the bill, click here.
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Source: Santa Clarita News