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January30

Addition to school property tax exemption approved

A bill clarifying school property tax exemptions passed committee on Tuesday (1/30).

 

House Taxation committee members passed House Bill 1143, which revises certain provisions regarding the tax exemption of certain school owned property, on a 10-4 vote.

 

HB 1143 would specifically codify language exempting housing owned by school districts for certified teachers to be tax exempt. ASBSD supports the bill.

 

“It (makes a) minor change, but to these school districts, it’s huge,” ASBSD Executive Director Wade Pogany said. “They use this practice to attract teachers.”

 

Eagle Butte School Board Chair Charles Shupick reiterated that thought to the committee.

 

“We do everything we can to make (housing) affordable for when (teachers) com here,” Shupick testified. “It will just adversely affect us if we don’t have this language put in.”

 

Shupick noted his district keeps affordable housing “at a rate” that allows it to be self-sustaining and a breakeven finance and cost for the school.

 

The need for the codification comes after legal challenge over the tax exemption recently took place.

 

“It was a loophole that was missed when this statute was written,” Rep. Oren Lesmeister, the bill’s prime sponsor, testified. “We’re just trying to alleviate that (discrepancy). These teacher housings will become exempt.”

 

“We’re talking small schools here…but this is a huge subject for these small schools.”

 

HB 1143 now moves to the House floor for review.

 

For updates on this bill and others throughout session, check the ASBSD Blog, Bill Tracker page and Twitter feed.

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