SUPPORT SB14-014 Improvements to the Property Tax/Rent/Heat Rebate Program (PTC) Helping Low-Income Seniors and Persons with Disabilities Live Independently (Sen. Kefalas/Rep. Pettersen)

Submitted by admin on January 28, 2014 - 1:57pm

SB-014, recommended by the Economic Opportunity Poverty Reduction Task Force, enhances the PTC Program for qualified households struggling to make ends meet and live independently in their homes.

 ü  Qualifying seniors and persons with disabilities, including veterans, will realize more money in their pockets from the increase in the maximum property tax/rent rebate and the minimum rebates; people who live in their homes on fixed or low-income face financial hardships; it is difficult to maintain a home and live independently with limited resources; the rebate helps people stay in their homes.

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Additional households will qualify for rebates under the expanded range of income eligibility.

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Recommendations of the August 2013 PTC Program Audit will be implemented, highlighting efficiency, collaboration and enhanced outreach strategies.

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The PTC rebate acts as a lifeline for many people who spend the dollars on basic needs; including home repairs; local spending is good for business and creates jobs.

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Offers a rational, fiscally prudent and targeted approach for assisting seniors and persons with disabilities of greatest need with property tax, rent and heating expenses.

 

SB-014 increases financial support for vulnerable households living in poverty.

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A claimant may receive the maximum rebate up to an income level of $6,639 for individuals and $10,731 for married couples with annual adjustment for inflation each tax year starting in 2015.

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Establishes a "flat rate" minimum rebate of $300 for individual PTC claimants with incomes between $11,369 and $14,937 and married PTC claimants with incomes between $15,461 and $20,163.

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Increases the maximum property tax rebate from $600 to $700.

 SB-014 supports agency efficiency and collaboration.

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Colorado Department of Revenue (DOR) will periodically update its PTC database to ensure that eligible households are receiving proper rebate amounts.

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Colorado Department of Human Services (DHS) will conduct outreach for the PTC Rebate Program to participants in other human service and need-based programs and report to the General Assembly on its efforts in every odd-numbered year.

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DOR and DHS will collaborate to efficiently administer the PTC Rebate Program.

 background:

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The Colorado PTC Program started in 1972 to provide property tax/rent assistance to low-income elders; assistance for heating expenses was added in 1980, and persons with disabilities were added in 1989.

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The PTC Program, administered by (DOR), provides individuals, married couples at least 65 years old and disabled claimants rebates for certain property tax/rent and heat expenses’ works with counties, LEAP and community-based groups.

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Rebate dollars come from the General Fund and are continuously appropriated by state law.

 ü  In FY 2013, 20,863 PTC filers received rebates averaging $331 costing $6.9M; in 2002, 51,107 returns were filed with rebates averaging $354 costing $18.1M; and 54% (2010) and 59% (2011) of PTC participants are persons with disabilities.

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