St. Louis Public Radio News
6:07 pm
Tue November 24, 2009

Mo. would pay first-year property taxes under proposal

Jefferson City, Mo. – Missouri Governor Jay Nixon and State Treasurer Clint Zweifel are backing a proposal to pay the first year's property taxes for some homebuyers.

The plan targets families making less than $98,000 a year, who buy a new or existing home after January 1st.

Zweifel says they would be eligible to have their first-year property taxes paid by the state, up to $1,250.

"This is an unprecedented time in this economy, so I think one of the most important things we can do is insure that we invest quickly and efficiently in Missouri families, and this a simple and easy way to do that," Zweifel said.

In addition, people who buy an energy efficient new home or buy an existing home and make energy-efficient improvements could have up to $1,750 dollars of their first-year property taxes covered.

The program's cost would be covered by a $15 million reserve fund held by the Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC).

Zweifel says the proposal would help the state's housing market and spur job growth.

"We do know the important role that home ownership plays in creation of jobs, and housing and jobs are very connected at every level, so this is a way to reinvest that money in a way that helps insure that we not only help achieve home ownership for some families, but we also help reinvest that money back into the economy," Zweifel said.

The proposal will be made at the MHDC's December 18th meeting.