I am pleased to announce SB 1113 (Knight), my sponsored proposal to protect disabled veterans, cleared the Assembly last week with unanimous, bipartisan support, and now awaits action by Governor Jerry Brown.
Under California law, veterans who receive a 100% disability rating from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may be eligible for a property tax exemption on the value of their home up to $124,932 or $187,399 in 2014 and equivalent amounts adjusted for inflation in future years. The exemption starts on the date of disability and disabled veterans may claim a refund for up to four years of back taxes paid.
Unfortunately, due to VA backlogs, some veterans have had to wait more than four years to receive their disability rating certifications. As a result, they’ve missed out on thousands of dollars in property tax refunds to which they were entitled and anticipated receiving.
SB 1113 would increase the availability of refunds on taxes previously paid from four years to eight years, allowing veterans to receive the full benefit of their exemption, even if the rating process takes more than four years to complete.
I applaud the Legislature for passing this legislation to help the men and women who have bravely served our country. Bureaucratic delays should never rob veterans of the tax benefits that are rightfully theirs.