Impact of Property Tax Stability Bill on Seniors

STATEWIDE — From August 8, Melder residents age 65 and older will have the option of freezing their future property tax rates at the current level.

Known as the Property Tax Stability Program, the law aims to stabilize property taxes for seniors who have owned a home for at least 10 years.

The bill was sponsored by Senator Aroostook Trey Stewart, who says he thinks seniors in the state living on fixed incomes shouldn’t have to worry about whether they can pay their taxes.

“Most of the time, they have fixed incomes and these incomes do not follow the increase in the cost of everything. Social Security may increase by a few dollars a year, but as we see now with inflation and other rising costs, including property taxes. and that can be a big burden,” Stewart said.

Besides the age requirement and having owned a property for at least a decade, senior citizens must also meet other requirements for the exemption.

Once approved, eligible owners who sell their property can transfer the set tax level to another property anywhere in the state.

For seniors like Richard Smith, this bill would allow him to stay at home.

“If property taxes continue to rise, I may not be able to live here. I may have to move into a nursing home, an apartment building. Somewhere,” Smith said.

Comments like these are why Stewart makes this bill a top priority.

“Your rate will be set to everything you do starting this year. In theory, if you apply before the end of this year to your local community, you can freeze the actual amount you owe that locality… And to really help target seniors in Melder, especially those who might be in trouble.

Penny D. Jackson