Freeze Property Tax Bills for Two Years

Property taxes in Iowa are the 10th highest in the nation, and as assessments go up, Iowans will receive significantly larger property tax bills.

ITR thinks it would be a good idea to implement a two-year property tax freeze so we can press pause and look at some ideas to fix the broken property tax system.

Sign this petition to ask lawmakers to support a property tax freeze:

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Iowa’s Property Tax System is Broken

Owning a house or other property is becoming unaffordable for too many Iowans. Property tax bills are increasing faster than what is reasonable. Something has to be done.

  • Iowa’s property tax burden is the 10th highest in the country.
  • Assessed values are expected to increase significantly this year.
  • Many city councils and county supervisors won’t reduce levy rates enough to offset assessment increases.

The legislature has done a good job of slowing the growth in state spending in recent years. This has led to meaningful state income tax cuts

Unfortunately, the example set by the legislature on spending and tax policy has generally not been continued at the local level and slowed the growth of your property tax bill.

Iowans can’t afford to wait for cities and counties to fix the problem on their own. Because local governments are subdivisions of the state, the responsibility now falls on state lawmakers to act – to protect Iowans from local elected officials who are more interested in growing their sprawling government obligations than protecting family budgets.

ITR’s Property Tax Solution

Step One: A Two-Year Property Tax Freeze

State lawmakers need to force local elected officials to make tough spending decisions that protect family budgets by enacting an immediate, temporary freeze on property tax bills for existing properties and then consider long-term solutions.

Freezing local government revenue from existing properties does not impact local governments’ ability to increase spending. It forces them to draw down cash reserves if revenue from new growth is insufficient to support what local elected officials believe is necessary for operations.

Take action! Sign the property tax freeze petition:

Step Two: Enact Longer-Term Options

While property taxes are frozen for existing properties, lawmakers should consider long-term options for controlling the growth of property taxes:

  1. Set stronger spending limitations.
  2. Close the honesty gap by “ratcheting-down” levy rates.
  3. Empower taxpayers with direct notification of tax increases.
  4. Tighten TIF and abatement usage.
  5. Maximize public input with November-only bond issue elections.

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