Last Modified: Monday, April 29, 2013 7:22 PM
BATON ROUGE — A constitutional amendment that would allow anyone over 65, regardless of income, to freeze their property assessments made its way out of a Senate committee on Monday.
The Senate Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Committee voted 7-2 in favor of Senate Bill 74 by Sen. Ronnie Johns, R-Sulphur. It heads to the Senate floor for consideration.
Under the measure, income restrictions would not apply to people 65 or older or their surviving spouses. The current income threshold is $69,463.
Johns said about 74 percent of people 65 and older fall under the current income level.
“This doesn’t really affect a whole lot of people,” he said.
Johns said tax assessors support the legislation because it is difficult for them to monitor signed affidavits that may have falsified income levels.
“Once that affidavit is signed, the assessor really has no recourse to investigate that income level,” he said. “So it has become a real burden on how the assessors do this.”
John LeBlanc, with the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, opposed the measure, saying he considered it a “tax shift” instead of a tax break.
“Someone is going to pay more than other taxpayers,” he said.
A special assessment would remain in place for people who are members of the armed forces or the Louisiana National Guard who are killed in action, missing in action or are a prisoner of war for more than 90 days. It also exists for people who are permanently disabled, or those who have a service-connected disability rating of at least 50 percent by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ standards.
The measure requires a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate. If approved, it would go before voters Nov. 4, 2014.
Posted By: Dale On: 4/30/2013
Title: A Has Been
Good piece of legislation Johns
Posted By: Enough is Enough On: 4/30/2013
Title: Another "B.S." Proposal by Ronnie "The Tax Expert" Johns
Does anyone else find extremely coincidental that Ronnie Johns always seems to make proposals that appear to suit his own agenda (i.e. age vs. income)? Here's the fact, not having any threshold for people 65 years and older, and still letting them receive all the social security benefits, does nothing more than to continue to put a significant strain on the middle aged and middle class. Mr. Leblanc is absolutely correct in submitting that this is a "tax shift" instead of a tax break.
It would appear that this is geared more toward helping retiring legislators than the general public. They just disguise the process in order to get the votes needed for it to pass. I'll vote NO!