Thursday, December 19, 2002

Ky. raises homestead exemption for 2 years

The Associated Press

FRANKFORT - Kentucky's homestead exemption, which gives the elderly or disabled a lower tax rate on real estate, is being increased by $1,200 for each of the next two years, the Revenue Cabinet announced Wednesday.

The exemption, created by constitutional amendment 30 years ago, currently applies to the first $26,800 of a property's assessed value. The new exemption will be $28,000.

The cabinet is required to adjust the exemption for inflation every two years. The cabinet estimated the new exemption will be worth $90 million in the 2003 tax year to 350,000 elderly or disabled Kentuckians.

To qualify, taxpayers must be 65 or older during the tax year. Or they must have been classified as totally disabled by a public or private retirement system and be receiving payments related to their disability.

Also Wednesday, the cabinet said it would charge 5 percent interest on unpaid and delinquent taxes in 2003.

By law, the rate must be based on the prime interest rate charged by Kentucky banks during October, rounded to the nearest full percentage point.

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