Ansley Mick, the Farm Bureau’s government relations director, says the money is going to the “Yes To Property Tax Relief” organization. Mick says the petition drive is in addition to efforts to convince state senators to pass property tax relief legislation.
“We support getting this done legislatively or through an initiative process or through a lawsuit,” Mick says. “One of those, the last, we didn’t necessarily see a path forward and we are still really hopeful something will get done in the legislature. It’s really important both to continue the conversations in the legislature and to have a backstop if nothing gets done this year.”
She says the “Yes to Property Tax Relief” petition measure calls for a refundable income tax credit equal to 50% of the property taxes landowners pay to schools.
“Based on our estimation, that would be about a 30% reduction in your overall tax liability,” Mick says. “Right now, that’s the standard bearer. This petition provides the state with the choice of funding schools or funding the refundable income tax credit.”
Mick says there are several pieces of property tax legislation moving through the Unicameral which all have the bureau’s backing.
“We supported Senator Erdman’s bill which basically mirrors the ballot initiative,” she says. “We supported the governor’s package. We supported Senator Friesen’s bill which would provide some foundation aid. I know he is committed to building that bill, paying for it, since we fund schools differently in a little more diverse way in this state.”
Several other agriculture groups are backing the “Yes to Property Tax Relief” petition drive, including: the Nebraska Pork Producers, Corn Growers and Soybean Growers associations as well as the Nebraska State Dairy Association.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton