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School Board Resolves to Help Our Senior Citizens

School board news

At its February 21 meeting, the board passed a resolution that takes issue with the state’s recent changes to its Homestead Exemption Act.

Ohio’s Homestead Exemption Program allows senior citizens to reduce their property tax bills by shielding some of the market value of their homes from taxation. The exemption, which takes the form of a credit, allows qualifying homeowners to exempt up to $25,000 of the market value of their homes from all local property taxes. Through the Homestead Exemption, a home with a market value of $100,000 is billed as if it is worth $75,000. Residents also had to be at least 65 years old.

Changes made to the Homestead Exemption program when the state’s two-year budget was announced last year eliminated some senior citizens from taking advantage of the program. New participants are now subject to eligibility based on means testing, while current qualifying residents are allowed to retain the benefit without meeting the new, tighter standards. The exemption will also only be available to those otherwise eligible taxpayers with household incomes that do not exceed $30,000, and are 65 years of age.

"When we meet with our senior citizens during the year, they overwhelmingly support the school district and all that we do to educate our students. However, they feel that the recent legislation eliminating the 12.5% rollback on new levies and the modification to the homestead exemption continues to eat away at their ability to continue to fund the financial needs of Madeira schools,” said Susan Crabill, Madeira City Schools Treasurer. “The seniors in our district want us to help them have a voice at the state level. This resolution is our way of providing that voice."

The goal of Madeira’s resolution is to change the law to basically “exempt” senior citizen from the HB59 elimination of the 12.5% rollback on new levies, and go back to the prior Homestead Exemption program that did not have a means test that limits eligibility. The resolution will be sent to Ohio Governor John Kasich and other elected political leaders in the state. The five members of Madeira’s Board of Education are President Pat Shea, Vice President Tarek Kamil, and members Ginger Madden, Richard Palmer and Cathy Swami.

For more information about the exemption please contact the Treasurer's office at 513.985.6070.

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