Assistant House Minority Leader Rep. Keith Wheeler, R-Oswego, filed new legislation in the Illinois House of Representatives on Monday to help provide property tax relief to seniors on fixed incomes to mitigate the impact of 40-year record high inflation.
Specifically, Rep. Wheeler’s legislation, House Bill 5824, would increase the Low-Income Senior Citizens Assessment Freeze Homestead Exemption from the current income threshold of $65,000 to $73,700 for tax year 2023. Also, starting in tax year 2024 and every year forward, this legislation would index the threshold to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) published by the U.S. Department of Labor in order to ensure that Illinois seniors do not see their property tax exemption eaten away by inflation ever again.
“Inflation today is hitting families hard, especially seniors on modest fixed incomes struggling to afford to stay in their own home,” Rep. Wheeler said. “The State of Illinois can step up and do something to help older adults who have worked hard all their lives to raise and provide for their family. Every senior should be able to retire with dignity. They should never be forced into considering selling their home because they cannot afford high property taxes in part because our existing homestead exemption for seniors is inadequate with runaway inflation eating away household budgets.”
House Bill 5824 can be considered when the Illinois House of Representatives returns to Springfield for the Fall Veto Session scheduled for November 15-17 and November 29-December 1. If passed and signed into law before the end of the 102nd General Assembly in January, Illinois seniors would be able to take advantage of the increased exemption in 2023.