Wichita has finalized plans to offer targeted property tax relief to certain vulnerable residents in a one-year pilot program.
The program builds off of existing tax credits at the state level to reimburse low-income seniors, disabled veterans and their surviving spouses, and low-income residents with underage dependents, for a portion of their 2023 property taxes.
Four in five Sedgwick County homeowners saw their property values increase in 2023, with the overall tax valuation in Wichita increasing by 9.3%, according to the county clerk.
“This is the largest targeted tax relief for people who need tax relief that we’ve done in at least a generation,” Mayor Brandon Whipple said Tuesday before the City Council gave its final approval.
The pilot program is designed to provide up to $660,000 in refunds on a first-come first-served basis through Nov. 30, 2024 or until funds run out.
Any Wichita resident who files their Kansas income tax return for 2023 and receives one of three tax credits is eligible for additional tax relief through the city.
All three state tax credits require applicants to be a Kansas resident and a homeowner for all of 2023.
To qualify for the Senior Citizen Property Tax Relief (Form K40PT) tax credit, residents must be 65 or older, have a taxable income of less than $22,000 (excluding Social Security Disability income) and live in a home valued less than $350,000.
The state credit provides a 75% property tax rebate for recipients. The city pilot program will cover the remaining 25% refund, canceling out property tax costs for low-income seniors who participate in both programs.
To qualify for the Homestead Tax Refund (Form K40H) tax credit, residents must be 55 or older, a disabled veteran, or have a dependent child under 18 who lived with them all of 2023. They must also have a taxable income of less than $37,750 (excluding Social Security Disability income) and live in a home valued less than $350,000.
The state credit will refund up to 75% of recipients’ property taxes (based on income level) and the city program will provide a rebate of up to 33% of the amount refunded by the state.
To qualify for the Property Tax Relief Claim for Seniors and Disabled Veterans (Form K40SVR) tax credit, residents must be 65 or older, a disabled veteran, or the spouse of a disabled veteran. They must also have a taxable income of less than $50,000 (excluding Social Security Disability income) and live in a home valued less than $350,000.
The state credit refunds up to 75% of recipients’ year-over-year property tax increase. The city will refund up to 33% the amount of the state rebate. Income tax returns are due by April 15.
“If you file a state tax return and you claim one of those three state tax credits that I just outlined, you’re qualified with us. It’s that simple,” City Treasurer Mark Manning said Tuesday. Residents must apply with the city for the city credit.
HOW TO APPLY
Residents interested in participating in the pilot program must provide the city with a copy of their state tax return and proof that it was accepted. They must also fill out a one-page application certifying they’re up to date on their property taxes and verifying the address where their refund check should be mailed.
These materials can be returned in person or by mail to the first-floor City Hall Express Office at 455 Main, or dropped off at one of the following neighborhood resource centers:
- Atwater Neighborhood Center at 2755 E 19th Street
- Colvin Neighborhood Center at 2820 S Roosevelt
- Evergreen Neighborhood Center at 2601 N Arkansas
A link to the city application can be found online here
This article was republished here with the permission of: The Wichita Eagle