The Maryland legislature enacted yesterday a package of property-tax-relief legislation that many delegates and senators had called the top priority of this year's General Assembly session.
The measures are designed both to slow the recent rapid increase in Maryland homeowner's property tax bills and to give extra tax credits to about 225,000 low and moderate income homeowners around the slate.
The legislation now goes to the desk of Acting Gov. Blair Lee III who has said that he will sign it.
One of the key elements of the package is a $30 million measure giving tax credits to low and moderate-income homeowners on the basis of a complex formula. It will give homeowners under 60 who qualify up to $450 in tax credits and will give disabled homeowners and those over 60 who qualify up to $900 in tax relief.
Also in the package is a measure pushed by Lee reducing by 10 percent that portion of a home's assessed value on which tax bills are based.
While this bill ideally would reduce homeowners' tax bills by 10 percent, it would also cost local governments approximately $35 million, revenues which some jurisdictions will have to make up by increasing their local tax rates. Such an increase would cut or eliminate homeowners' potential tax savings.
Also included in the package is a measure that holds tax increases based on increased annual assessment to 15 percent a year.