In an effort to cut $600,000,000 from Colorado’s budget, Governor Ritter has announced some proposed cuts. One of those is the Senior Property Tax Homestead Exemption. This has delta resident Joyce Riley very concerned, "it would be damaging to any senior citizen, when you're on a fixed income it's hard to meet your payments."
She says the exemption gives her a nearly $500 discount on her property tax.
State Representative Steve King says the state needs to get creative and find cuts elsewhere. Cutting the homestead exemption would save the state nearly $75,000,000. The program, which has been reinstated in the last couple of years, was suspended for three years beginning in 2003. King says suspending the break during such tough economic times may cause some senior citizens to lose their homes, making the economy even worse.
Opponents of homestead exemption say that since the only qualifications for the break is that it’s offered to people older than 65 and who have owned their home for more than ten years, that some senior citizens who don't need the break may take advantage of the money anyway. But for those who count on the tax break the extra money may just break their bank.