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Missouri House special committee to review two property tax bills, vote on three

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(The Center Square) – A Missouri House special committee on taxes will hear two bills on Wednesday, and lawmakers will vote on three others.

The Special Committee on Property Tax Reform, led by Rep. Brad Christ, R-St. Louis, will hear a bill that would reduce the percentage of assessments and another bill that would change the assessment process. Both bills are sponsored by Rep. Aaron McMullen, R-Independence, and the committee vice chairman.

The three bills up for a vote would change the tax credit for senior citizens and disabled veterans, make the most recent purchase price the value of real property for a tax assessment, and ask voters to link property tax increases to the lesser of the consumer price index or up to 2%.

The committee will hear testimony on House Bill 1831, which would reduce the rate of residential property tax assessment from 19% to 15% and cut the rate of utility, industrial, commercial, railroad and other property not considered residential or agricultural from 32% to 15%.

McMullen’s other bill, House Bill 2445, would void increases in property assessments without a physical inspection and the previous valuation be applied. It also would mandate county assessors reimburse taxpayers for costs and fees expended by the taxpayer if their appeal reduces the appraised value and increases the maximum amount of fees from $1,000 to $5,000 for residential property appeals and from $4,000 to $5,000 for utility, industrial railroads or other properties in the classification.

Bills to be voted on include House Bill 1906, sponsored by Rep. Darin Chappell, R-Rogersville, which would change the value of real property for assessment purposes to the most recent purchase price. The value would be used for all subsequent assessments until its sale. The bill contains a provision where if the homeowner makes additions or improvements and increases the value of the property by 50% or more, the assessor must be notified to make a new assessment.

The committee will vote on House Bill 1670, sponsored by Rep. Mark Matthiesen, R-O’Fallon, which would increase the maximum income levels for senior citizen and disabled veteran taxpayers attempting to qualify for a tax credit on real estate taxes or rent. The bill increases the amount of the tax credit from $1,100 to $1,550 for a homeowner and from $750 to $1,055 for a renter.

House Joint Resolution 120, sponsored by Rep. Justin Hicks, R-Lake St. Louis, would give voters an opportunity to change the rate of increases on assessed value of residential property. If placed on the ballot, voters would be asked to use the consumer price index rate, or up to a 2% annual increase in the assessed valuation – whichever is less – for the assessed rate. However, it also would allow value added to the property as a result of new construction or improvements to be subject to an increased assessment.

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