The news recently mentioned a lawsuit that the City and County of Honolulu, now joined by the other three counties, has leveled against our state government regarding the Hawaii State Teachers Association-sponsored constitutional amendment. The counties, obviously not overjoyed at the prospect of the state slapping a surcharge on their primary source of revenue, want the courts to void the ballot question.
One of the more unique property tax exemptions in the City & County of Honolulu is the exemption for “Historic Residential Real Property Dedicated for Preservation.” Under the exemption ordinance, owners of historic homes can save thousands of dollars in real property taxes every year if they put up a certain plaque, allow viewing of the home and meet other requirements.
Today we focus on Kauai real property tax, thanks to an alert reader who has given us a horrifying account of something so commonplace as buying a home there. How long do you think it takes between buying a home on Kauai and having the “home exemption” effective for real property tax there?
In this space, I often have unflattering things to say about tax credits. Every year, legislators propose tax credits for some little-noticed niche in an industry. Sometimes the credit is well thought through, and sometimes it isn’t. Sometimes the desired effect can be accomplished more cheaply and simply, and sometimes the justification for the credit is sketchy at best.
The ongoing furor in Honolulu over the extent to which the rail project is adequately funded, or lack thereof, and the possibility of new state-mandated property taxes to fund education, lead us to look at how we can or should make property tax classifications.