DES MOINES, Iowa — Statehouse Republicans have made it clear that they want to make some changes to the property tax code in the state this session.
On Monday, Iowa Senate lawmakers held a subcommittee to advance a bill that would actually correct previous property tax code changes.
“It’s artificially inflating that percentage of what it should be, the bill here today is trying to get that back to what the intent was so we don’t see residential property taxpayers paying additional property taxes when that was not the intent of the law,” said State Senator Dan Dawson, (R) from Council Bluffs.
The mistake stems from bills passed in 2013 and 2021 where the property tax code included multi-residential evaluations mixed in with residential property tax calculations. This resulted in residential property taxpayers paying more than they should have.
So now, this bill, Senate Study Bill 1056, will correct that error. The only problem is that city and county officials have used the incorrect calculations to pay for the fiscal year 2024 starting on July 1, 2023. This leaves the majority of the correcting in the hands of local governments.
One mayor of a local town highlighted how this change will her city’s revenue growth.
“What this means to our city is a reduction of $200,000 in our general fund, leaving us with only $47,000 in revenue growth from last year,” said Sara Kurovski, (R) Mayor of Pleasant Hill.
A lot of city officials were calling for more time, as a lot of local governments have locked in budgets for the upcoming fiscal year; and this bill correcting the mistake will take time for these entities to figure out.
The bill passed through the Senate ways and means subcommittee, with an amendment to the bill to give city governments 15 days to report the correct numbers once the law is signed.
Sen. Dawson said that they want to push this bill forward as quickly as possible.