Bill by Senator Nicholson to help victims of natural disasters signed into law
“This bill gives victims of natural disasters a chance to get back on their feet”
DENVER— Today, a bill that will repair the effect of an unfair tax policy on the families who have lost their home to natural disasters and forest fires was signed into law by Governor John Hickenlooper. House Bill 1042, sponsored by Senator Jeanne Nicholson (D-Gilpin County), closes an unfair tax policy that punishes those who have lost a home to a wildfire but have not yet rebuilt their home.
Senator Nicholson offered the following comment on the Governor’s signing of HB-1042:
“At a time when our citizens are experiencing an enormous loss, currently, home owners pay almost four times the amount of property taxes they would have paid had they not lost their home. That’s just wrong. This bill gives victims of natural disasters a chance to get back on their feet and rebuild their homes without the added burden of an increased property tax.”
Under current law, when a home is lost due to a natural disaster and the owner doesn’t immediately rebuild, their property is no longer assessed at the residential rate (7.96 percent) and is instead assessed at the vacant property rate (29 percent). When families are struggling to put their lives back together this additional cost can be tough to bear. This bill keeps property tax rates for these families at the residential rate.
House Bill 1042 was sponsored in the House by Representative Claire Levy (D-Boulder).