SECOND REGULAR SESSION
HOUSE BILL NO. 1367
92ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY
INTRODUCED BY REPRESENTATIVES LEMBKE (Sponsor), SCHNEIDER, PORTWOOD, DUSENBERG, DEMPSEY, BIVINS, TOWNLEY, DIXON, LIPKE, ERVIN, LeVOTA, GREEN, REINHART, ICET, COOPER (120), THRELKELD, NIEVES, CUNNINGHAM (86), KELLY (144), BAKER, DETHROW, BISHOP, RECTOR, EMERY, PHILLIPS, WOOD, CUNNINGHAM (145), ANGST, RICHARD, WRIGHT, CROWELL, JETTON, HUNTER, PEARCE, PARKER, BYRD, JACKSON, RUPP, HOBBS, MAY, SCHAAF, BEARDEN, ROARK, BEAN, BROWN, RUESTMAN, WILSON (119), STEVENSON, MOORE, MARSH, GOODMAN, ENGLER, DOUGHERTY, HUBBARD, SMITH (14), STEFANICK, COOPER (155), PURGASON, VOGT, YAEGER, BRUNS, JOHNSON (47), WILLOUGHBY, HANAWAY, MUNZLINGER, PRATT, YATES, KINGERY, LAGER, DARROUGH, QUINN, YOUNG, SCHLOTTACH,
WARD AND CARNAHAN (Co-sponsors).
Read 1st time February 3, 2004, and copies ordered printed.
STEPHEN S. DAVIS, Chief Clerk
To amend chapter 137, RSMo, by adding thereto one new section relating to a homestead exemption for the elderly.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:
Section A. Chapter 137, RSMo, is amended by adding thereto one new section, to be known as section 137.106, to read as follows:
137.106. 1. This section may be known and may be cited as "The Missouri Homestead Preservation Act".
2. As used in this section, the following terms shall mean:
(1) "Department", the department of revenue;
(2) "Director", the director of revenue;
(3) "Eligible owner", any individual owner of property who is sixty-five years old or older as of January first of the taxable year in which the individual applies for a homestead exemption under this section, and who has an income equal to or less than the maximum upper limit; in the case of a married couple owning property either jointly or as tenants by the entirety, or where only one spouse owns the property, such couple shall be considered an eligible taxpayer if either spouse has reached the age of sixty-five or if one spouse is disabled, and the combined income of the couple does not exceed the maximum upper limit; no individual shall be an eligible owner if the individual has not paid their property tax liability, if any, in full by the payment due date in any of the three prior taxable years, except that a late payment of a property tax liability in any prior year, not including the immediate prior year, shall not disqualify a potential eligible owner if such owner paid in full the tax liability and any and all penalties, additions and interest that arose as a result of such late payment; no individual shall be an eligible owner if such person qualifies for the senior citizen property tax relief credit pursuant to sections 135.010 to 135.035, RSMo;
(4) "Homestead", the primary residence in Missouri owned and occupied by the applicant and not to exceed five acres of land surrounding it as is reasonably necessary for use of the dwelling as a home;
(5) "Homestead exemption amount", the difference, if a positive amount, between the property tax otherwise owed on real property actually occupied by the owner or owners thereof as a homestead and exempted from property tax under this section in the year the taxpayer applies for the exemption and the property tax owed in the previous year, less the greater of five percent or the percentage increase in the consumer price index for the United States or its successor index, as defined and officially recorded by the United States Department of Labor or its successor agency;
(6) "Maximum upper limit", in the calendar year 2005, the Missouri adjusted gross income sum of one hundred thousand dollars; in each successive calendar year this amount shall be raised by the incremental increase in the general price level, as defined pursuant to article X, section 17 of the Missouri Constitution;
(7) "Losing revenue" or "lost revenues", a decrease in the revenues from taxes owed on real property subclassified as residential property in section 4(b), article X, Constitution of Missouri, per political subdivision, when compared to the revenues from the taxes owed on such real property in the immediately preceding year.
3. Pursuant to section 6(a), article X, Constitution of Missouri, eligible owners of property shall be allowed a homestead exemption under this section on their property taxes otherwise owed. The exemption shall be an amount equal to the homestead exemption amount. The amount of the exemption shall be listed separately on each taxpayer's tax bill for the current taxable year, or on a document inclosed with the taxpayer’s bill. The homestead exemption shall not affect the process of setting the tax rate as required pursuant to article X, section 22 of the Constitution of Missouri and section 137.073 in any prior, current, or subsequent taxable year.
4. Any potential eligible owner may apply for the homestead exemption by completing an application through their local assessor’s office. Applications may be completed between the date the property tax is levied and the date the property tax is due in any taxable year in order for the taxpayer to be eligible for the homestead exemption amount. The application shall be on forms provided to the assessor’s office by the department. The applicant shall include:
(1) The applicant’s age;
(2) The applicant’s prior year Missouri adjusted gross income;
(3) The address of the homestead property;
(4) Copies of receipts indicating payment of property tax by the applicant for the homestead property for the two prior taxable years;
(5) A disclosure of any improvements made to the homestead that totaled more than five thousand dollars in any taxable year.
Applicants shall attest that the information provided on the application is complete and accurate; and
(6) A fifteen dollar application fee.
5. The assessor, upon receiving an application, shall:
(1) Certify the actual homestead, including verification of the acreage classified as residential on the assessor’s property record card;
(2) Obtain appropriate levy codes for each homestead from the county collector;
(3) Record on the application the tax liability on the homestead for the prior and current taxable years, adjusted to exclude any improvements in the current taxable year; and
(4) Send all applications to the collector by October thirty-first of each year.
6. Upon receipt of the applications, the collector shall verify the applicant's Missouri adjusted gross income, the age, and the payment status of property taxes owed in the previous year and make adjustments to these numbers as necessary on the applications. Once age, income, and property tax status is verified, the collector shall adjust the property tax owed in accordance with the homestead exemption amount.
7. The general assembly shall appropriate moneys from the general revenue fund so that any political subdivision losing revenue during the time an owner of real property received a homestead exemption under this section shall receive proportional restitution, based on the ratio the tax levy of each subdivision bears to the total tax levy between the time the exemption was granted under this section and the owner of the real property is no longer eligible for the homestead exemption.
8. Ten dollars of the application fee collected under this section shall be deposited to the credit of the assessment fund of the political subdivision collecting the fee as created under section 137.750, and the remaining five dollars shall be deposited to the credit of the county collector's fund, or the equivalent county fund, of the county in which the homestead is located.
9. Determination of eligibility for the homestead exemption provided in this section regarding both the status of the owner and the status of property shall be based on the status of the owner and the property as of January first of each year; any income limits shall be based on the tax year prior to the year in which the exemption is applied.
10. The department shall promulgate rules for implementation of this section. Any rule or portion of a rule, as that term is defined in section 536.010, RSMo, that is created under the authority delegated in this section shall become effective only if it complies with and is subject to all of the provisions of chapter 536, RSMo, and, if applicable, section 536.028, RSMo. This section and chapter 536, RSMo, are nonseverable and if any of the powers vested with the general assembly pursuant to chapter 536, RSMo, to review, to delay the effective date, or to disapprove and annul a rule are subsequently held unconstitutional, then the grant of rulemaking authority and any rule proposed or adopted after August 28, 2004, shall be invalid and void.
11. This section shall become effective January 1, 2005, and shall apply to all taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2005.