Senate File 15 - IntroducedA Bill ForAn Act 1providing a property assessment adjustment for certain
2property of persons who have attained the age of sixty-five,
3providing a penalty, and including retroactive and other
4applicability provisions.
5BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA:
1   Section 1.  NEW SECTION.  425B.1  Homestead assessed value
2adjustment — purpose.
  
   3Persons who own their homesteads and who meet the
4qualifications provided in this chapter are eligible for an
5adjustment in the assessed value of their homesteads, as
6provided in this chapter, to prevent an increase in such
7values.
8   Sec. 2.  NEW SECTION.  425B.2  Definitions.
  
   9As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise
10requires:
   111.  “Assessed value” means the actual value prior to any
12adjustment pursuant to section 441.21, subsection 4.
   132.  “Base assessment year” means the assessment year
14beginning in the base year.
   153.  “Base year” means the calendar year last ending before
16the claim is filed.
   174.  “Claimant” means a person filing a claim for adjustment
18under this chapter who has attained the age of sixty-five years
19on or before December 31 of the base year and is domiciled in
20this state at the time the claim is filed or at the time of the
21person’s death in the case of a claim filed by the executor or
22administrator of the claimant’s estate.
   235.  “Homestead” means the dwelling owned and actually used
24as a home by the claimant during any part of the base year
25and so much of the land surrounding it, including one or more
26contiguous lots or tracts of land, as is reasonably necessary
27for use of the dwelling as a home, and may consist of a part
28of a multidwelling or multipurpose building and a part of the
29land upon which it is built. It does not include personal
30property except that a manufactured or mobile home may be
31a homestead. Any dwelling or a part of a multidwelling or
32multipurpose building which is exempt from taxation does not
33qualify as a homestead under this chapter. A homestead must
34be located in this state. When a person is confined in a
35nursing home, extended-care facility, or hospital, the person
-1-1shall be considered as occupying or living in the person’s
2homestead if the person is the owner of the homestead and the
3person maintains the homestead and does not lease, rent, or
4otherwise receive profits from other persons for the use of the
5homestead.
   66.  “Owned” means owned by an owner as defined in section
7425.11.
8   Sec. 3.  NEW SECTION.  425B.3  Right to file a claim.
  
   9The right to file a claim for an assessed value adjustment
10under this chapter may be exercised by the claimant or on
11behalf of a claimant by the claimant’s legal guardian, spouse,
12or attorney, or by the executor or administrator of the
13claimant’s estate. If a claimant dies after having filed a
14claim for adjustment, the amount of any adjustment shall be
15made as if the claimant had not died.
16   Sec. 4.  NEW SECTION.  425B.4  Claim for adjustment.
  
   171.  Subject to the limitations provided in this chapter,
18a claimant may annually claim an adjustment of the assessed
19value of the claimant’s homestead for the base assessment year.
20The adjustment claim shall be filed with the county assessor
21between January 1 and February 15 immediately following
22the close of the base assessment year. However, in case of
23sickness, absence, or other disability of the claimant, or
24if in the judgment of the county assessor good cause exists,
25the county assessor may extend the time for filing a claim for
26adjustment through June 30 of the same calendar year.
   272.  The county assessor shall notify the department of
28revenue by March 1 of the number of claimants receiving
29adjustments under this chapter and the total amount of the
30reduced assessed values for the base assessment year.
31   Sec. 5.  NEW SECTION.  425B.5  Adjustment — maximum tax
32dollars levied.
  
   33If the claimant’s assessed value in the base assessment year
34prior to an adjustment under this chapter is less than one
35hundred fifty thousand dollars or if the claimant’s assessed
-2-1value for the assessment year preceding the base assessment
2year, if adjusted under this chapter, is less than one hundred
3fifty thousand dollars, the assessed value of the claimant’s
4homestead in the base assessment year shall be adjusted, but
5not increased, to equal the assessed value, as such assessed
6value may have been adjusted pursuant to this chapter, in
7the assessment year preceding the base assessment year. If
8the amount of property taxes levied against the adjusted
9assessment exceeds the amount of property taxes levied against
10the property in the fiscal year for which taxes were first
11levied against an adjusted assessment under this chapter, the
12treasurer shall subtract the difference from the amount due.
13   Sec. 6.  NEW SECTION.  425B.6  Administration.
  
   14The director of revenue shall make available suitable forms
15for claiming an assessed value adjustment with instructions
16for claimants. Each assessor and county treasurer shall make
17available the forms and instructions. The claim shall be in a
18form as the director may prescribe.
19   Sec. 7.  NEW SECTION.  425B.7  Proof of claim.
  
   201.  Every claimant shall give the department of revenue, in
21support of the claim, reasonable proof of:
   22a.  Age.
   23b.  Changes of homestead.
   24c.  Size and nature of the property claimed as the homestead.
   252.  The director of revenue may require any additional proof
26necessary to support a claim.
27   Sec. 8.  NEW SECTION.  425B.8  Audit — denial.
  
   28If on the audit of a claim for adjustment under this chapter,
29the director of revenue determines the claim is not allowable,
30the director shall notify the claimant of the denial and the
31reasons for it. The director shall not deny a claim after
32three years from October 31 of the year in which the claim was
33filed. The director shall give notification to the county
34assessor of the denial of the claim and the county assessor
35shall instruct the county treasurer to proceed to collect the
-3-1tax that would have been levied on the applicable adjusted
2assessed value in the same manner as other property taxes
3due and payable are collected, if the property on which the
4adjustment was granted is still owned by the claimant.
5   Sec. 9.  NEW SECTION.  425B.9  Waiver of confidentiality.
  
   61.  A claimant shall expressly waive any right to
7confidentiality relating to all information available to the
8county assessor who shall hold the information confidential
9except that it may be used as evidence to disallow the assessed
10value adjustment.
   112.  The department of revenue may release information
12pertaining to a person’s eligibility or claim for or receipt of
13the assessed value adjustment to an employee of the department
14of inspections and appeals in the employee’s official conduct
15of an audit or investigation.
16   Sec. 10.  NEW SECTION.  425B.10  False claim — penalty.
  
   17A person who makes a false affidavit for the purpose of
18obtaining an adjustment in assessed value provided for in
19this chapter or who knowingly receives the adjustment without
20being legally entitled to it or makes claim for the adjustment
21in more than one county in the state without being legally
22entitled to it is guilty of a fraudulent practice. The claim
23for adjustment shall be disallowed in full and property tax
24shall be levied on the disallowed adjustment at the rate that
25would have been levied but for the adjustment. The director of
26revenue shall send a notice of disallowance of the claim.
27   Sec. 11.  NEW SECTION.  425B.11  Notices, appeals, and
28rules.
  
   29To the extent not otherwise contrary to the provisions of
30this chapter:
   311.  Section 423.39, subsection 1, shall apply to all notices
32under this chapter.
   332.  Any person aggrieved by an act or decision of the
34director of revenue or the department of revenue under this
35chapter shall have the same rights of appeal and review as
-4-1provided in section 423.38 and the rules of the department of
2revenue.
   33.  A claim for adjustment shall be disallowed if the
4department finds that the claimant or a person of the
5claimant’s household received title to the homestead primarily
6for the purpose of receiving benefits under this chapter.
   74.  The department of revenue shall adopt rules pursuant to
8chapter 17A to administer and interpret this chapter, including
9rules to prevent and disallow duplication of benefits and to
10prevent any unreasonable hardship or advantage to any person.
11   Sec. 12.  APPLICABILITY.  This Act applies retroactively to
12January 1, 2021, for assessment years beginning on or after
13that date and to the filing of claims on or after January 1,
142022, for adjustments of assessed values.
15EXPLANATION
16The inclusion of this explanation does not constitute agreement with
17the explanation’s substance by the members of the general assembly.
   18This bill provides for an adjustment in the assessed value
19of a homestead, as defined in the bill, if the owner is a
20person who is 65 or older. The bill also limits the adjustment
21in assessed value to homesteads that have certain assessed
22valuations of less than $150,000. If those qualifications are
23met, the assessed value of the homestead upon which property
24taxes are levied in a fiscal year is the same assessed value as
25for the previous fiscal year. The bill specifies that assessed
26value is the actual value prior to any rollback being applied.
   27The bill provides that a person who makes a false affidavit
28for the purpose of obtaining an adjustment, knowingly receives
29the adjustment without being legally entitled to it, or makes
30claim for the adjustment in more than one county without being
31legally entitled to it is guilty of a fraudulent practice and
32is subject to a criminal penalty.
   33The bill applies retroactively to January 1, 2021, for
34assessment years beginning on or after that date and applies to
35claims filed on or after January 1, 2022, for the adjustments.
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