Councilors Schedule 'Workshop' to Focus on Senior Tax Deferment
The Barrington Town Council decides Monday night that more in-depth analysis and discussion of the proposal to start a senior tax-deferment program is needed.
The Town Council took another step toward creating a possible tax deferral program for Barrington property owners 65 and older at its meeting Monday night, March 4.
After listening to Finance Director Dean Huff explain a variety of options for a possible tax deferral program, the Councilors decided the issue needed significantly more discussion and analysis.
They set a special meeting on March 18 to assess the concept as a whole and various options presented by Huff.
The discussion at that “workshop” also is expected to deal with the “circuit breaker” tax-limiting program for residents with lower household incomes. That program already saves about 100 residents more than $125,000 in taxes each year.
The tax-deferral program would defer only the “incremental real estate tax increase" for residents after age 65 – not the entire real estate tax.
It would effectively “freeze” taxes after an “election date” until a future date 10, 15, 20 or more years down the road or the end of life. The Senior Advisory Board supports a 10- or 15-year deferment.
At that point, taxes would come due with interest under one of two options – either 6 percent compounded annually or 12 percent compounded at a daily rate, according to Huff. The Senior Advisory Board prefers 6 percent.
Income limits are among the options to be considered at the workshop. Huff proposed three options: $75,440 or 80 percent of the Barrington median household income; $44,780 or 80 percent of the state median household income; or three times the 2012 federal poverty level or $33,510 for a family of one and $45,390 for a family of two. The senior board prefers the first option.
The tax would come due within 6 months of death of the qualified resident, with the transfer of the property to another person, upon written request of the applicant to be removed or at the end of the elected term.
The “circuit breaker” factors to be considered would increase amounts and income limits.
The current program gives credits ranging from $525 to $1,500 depending on household income up to $28,000.