Fridley Reps Introduce Bills on Marriage Amendment, Mortgage Value Homestead Tax Credit
Also of interest in House: tornado tax relief, bicycle lights, foreclosure tenants.
The three state representatives whose districts include parts of Fridley have so far signed on a cosponsors of two bills: one to repeal the marriage amendment, the other to restore the Mortgage Value Homestead Credit.
Repealing Marriage Amendment
Rep. Carolyn Laine (DFL-50A), who represents western and southern Fridley, and Rep. Kate Knuth (DFL-50B), who represents Fridley's southeastern corner, are co-authors with 15 others of a bill to repeal the marriage amendment passed last year.
The amendment to the Minnesota Constitution is currently set to appear on ballots throughout the state in November. It would define marriage as between one man and one woman.
Restoring Mortgage Value Homestead Credit
All three of Fridley's representatives—Laine, Knuth and Tom Tillberry (DFL-51B)—are cosponsors of a bill that would restore the mortgage value homestead credit to the state's tax law.
To help balance the state’s budget, the Minnesota Legislature repealed the market value homestead credit, a program created in 2001 through which the state would cut homeowners’ property taxes, and then reimburse the cities and counties the amount of the cut (although the state often didn’t pay the local governments the full amounts they were owed).
The credit applies to homes valued less than $413,778 that are homesteaded—or the homeowner’s primary residence. But to protect these homeowners from a property tax increase once the program disappears, legislators decided to reduce the taxable values of these properties, which drives down local government tax revenues. (See an explanatory video from Oakdale Patch that uses a Monopoly board here.)
Other Bills of Interest
Here are a few other bills from among those introduced on the first day of the session Tuesday that may be of interest to people in Fridley.
- A bill to temporarily increase the amount of the property tax refunds for renters in areas affected by last May's tornado
- A bill to appropriate funds for electric fish barriers at the three Mississippi River dams downstream from Fridley, to stop the migration of Asian carp
- A bill for a pilot program to give away free bicycle headlamps—equipment that police said Kerry Baker was missing when a snowplow hit his bike on East River Road in Fridley on Jan. 1, 2012
- A bill that would increase protections for tenants of properties that go into foreclosure