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PROPERTY TAX: Lawmakers Strike Deal

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The legislative session was supposed to end two weeks ago, but lawmakers are still working away on key issues.

Late Thursday, state lawmakers did strike a deal on the long-debated issue of property tax reform.

Under the plan commercial and industrial property taxes will be cut by 10-percent over the next ten years. They are currently taxed on 100-percent of the value of their property, but that will drop to 90-percent in 2015.

At the same time, local governments will only be able to raise residential property taxes by 3-percent each year. The current cap is 4-percent.

Lawmakers are promising to give more money to local governments to offset lost revenue.

The bill also includes an income tax credit that will cut about $30 off of the average taxpayer’s liability this year.

“Once both caucuses finally go, eh…we don’t like it necessarily, but we can agree to it. That’s when you get the overall, everyone come together and pushing a yes vote,” Rep. Matt Windschittl said.

The bill still has to be debated and passed in both the house and senate then it goes to Governor Branstad for his signature.

Lawmakers also approved agriculture and natural resource budgets Thursday.