About a third of the property owners identified for possible property tax credits in Davenport and Scott County have responded, the Scott County Board of Supervisors learned Tuesday.
The city and county assessor offices sent out more than 4,000 letters at the beginning of November to owners of property identified as commercial, industrial or railroad. Application deadline for the tax credit is Jan. 15, 2014.
The new tax credit was a key piece of the bipartisan property tax compromise law passed by the Iowa Legislature this year and signed into law by Gov. Terry Branstad. The typical property owner is expected to see a payout of $513 in the first year, growing to almost $2,000, according to the state Legislative Services Agency.
The credit will first apply to taxes to be paid in the fall 2014 and spring 2015. It will be fully in effect in the 2018 fiscal year.
The Davenport Assessor's office sent out 1,727 letters for 3,030 parcels and has received 860 applications, a return of 28.3 percent, Nick VanCamp, the city's chief deputy assessor, told supervisors.
Scott County sent out 1,197 letters and has received 412 applications, Lew Zabel, the county's chief deputy assessor, told the board.
Zabel did offer a caveat to the tax credits, saying some property owners who received the letters may not be eligible.
The chief deputies told supervisors there wouldn't be any follow up to the original letters. Auditor Roxanna Moritz, whose office will compile the tax credits on tax bills, recommended contacting Davenport about putting information about the program on the city's public access channel.
Officials say that as awareness grows, applications will increase. Although response has been slow, Scott County Assessor Dale Denklau said after the meeting that he was pleased with the response so far, noting the application deadline is still about a month and a half away.
In future years, the application deadline will be March 15. Once someone applies, there will be no need to apply again.