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Good News for Tax Season

I have gotten some emails saying I get too partisan in my weekly columns. I always try to communicate the facts and as I was taught by my father to call a spade a spade. Well the good news is that senate Democrats and Republicans did some good work together this last week. The Iowa Senate unanimously voted in favor of SF 106, a bill that would help every Iowa taxpayer by coupling the Iowa tax laws with the federal tax laws. The importance of the Property Assessment Appeals Board (PAAB) and not allowing it to end on July 1, 2013, was also brought forward with a commitment made for further examination.

Each year, the General Assembly considers an IRC (Internal Revenue Code) Update bill. This legislation decides whether the state will incorporate into Iowa income tax law federal income tax changes enacted by Congress during calendar year 2012. Moving quickly on this bill was the right thing to do and I am pleased that the bill passed unanimously. I plan to continue to offer opportunities to provide tax relief to hard-working Iowans. This is the work of the people and it is our job at the Statehouse to reduce the tax burden and enable citizens to keep more of their hard-earned money.

The Iowa PAAB is a valuable resource that was created for the sole purpose of establishing a consistent, fair and equitable property assessment appeal process. The Board is set to end on July 1, 2013, unless the Legislature passes legislation to keep it intact. Allowing the Board to sunset would be a disservice to Iowans.

The PAAB is government working for the people. The Board offers Iowans a taxpayer-friendly recourse to appeal their property assessments and taking that away is simply wrong. Appealing property tax assessments can be a lengthy and costly process, but having a board in place with experts on the panel gives taxpayers an opportunity to have their voice heard. Dissolving the Board means Iowans will have to take their appeals to court which is a costly and complicated route.


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