AGENDA ITEM #5A
July 24, 2015
Josh Hamlin, Legislative
Bill 21-15, Finance - Renters' Property Tax Relief Supplement
Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee recommendation (3-0):
Bill 21-15, Finance - Renters' Property Tax Relief Supplement, sponsored by Lead
Sponsor Councilmember EIrich and Co-sponsors Councilmembers Navarro and Riemer, was
introduced on May 5,2015. A public hearing
held on June 9 and a Government Operations
and Fiscal Policy Committee worksession was held on July 16.
Bill 21-15 would require the Director of Finance to pay a Renters' Property Tax Relief
Supplement to certain residents who qualify for a payment from the State under the State "Renters'
Tax Credit Program" (see ©9-13). The State payment to renters is modeled after the Homeowners'
Tax Credit (commonly referred to as the "Circuit Breaker"), and is based on the premise that a
portion of rent paid by renters is attributable to property tax paid by the owner of the property.
The purpose of the State payment is to return some of that money to renters in the same way it is
returned to homeowners through the Circuit Breaker payment.
Bill 21-15 would create a supplemental payment similar in character to the County
supplement to the Circuit Breaker payment under Section 52-11A of the County Code. Eligibility
for the County supplement would be tied to eligibility for the State payment. The County
supplement under the Bill would be 50% ofthe State payment, which is capped at $750.
Public Hearing and Correspondence
A public hearing on the Bill was held on June 9, 2015, and there was one speaker. Ilana
Branda of the Montgomery Housing Partnership (MHP) testified in support of the Bill (© 14-15),
saying that the Bill would put more money in the hands of its most vulnerable residents. She
indicated that the County payment would result in almost 500 households having an additional
$130, enough to cover a family's portion of reduced price meals at a Montgomery County