Proptax committee screenshot

The Idaho Legislature’s interim committee on property taxes meets on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020, in the Capitol’s Lincoln Auditorium in Boise.

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Limiting local government budgets. Authorizing impact fees for schools. Raising the homeowner’s exemption. Taxing government property that’s leased to private entities.

All were among more than a dozen draft bills that came up for initial discussion at the Idaho Legislature’s Property Tax & Revenue Expenditures Interim Committee on Friday. No decisions were made, and no votes taken.

“What I’d like to see is the citizens taking a look at the proposals and at the discussion and talk to us,” said Sen. Jim Rice, R-Caldwell, co-chairman of the interim committee.

Other proposals included setting uniform accounting standards for local government budgets with a state legislative committee overseeing them; increasing the “circuit breaker” tax relief program for the low-income and disabled; and authorizing impact fees for higher education, community colleges and public transportation along with public schools. None of those can charge impact fees now, which are one-time charges assessed on new construction to help mitigate the costs of providing services to the new growth.

You can read my full story here at (subscription required), or pick up tomorrow's edition of the Idaho Press.

Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.

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