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Boise to accept $27.9 million from Governor Little’s tax program

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Unlike localities in Canyon County, the City of Boise will accept state funds for cities who chose not to take any increase to property tax rates due to the economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier in the year, Little announced plans to use some of the $1.25 billion the state was allocated through the CARES Act to give cash payments to cities to use to pay public safety costs incurred due to the pandemic in exchange for not increasing property taxes up to the 3% allowed under the law. Boise joined a list of cities months ago saying they would accept the aid, which is now coming in at $27.9 million.

“We’re passing this property tax rebate onto our residents because they need as much relief as possible this year. Just as Boiseans tightened their belts, we tightened ours by not taking the 3% allowable to cities. And we see this one-time rebate as helpful relief for our residents in this unique time,” Mayor Lauren McLean said in a press release.

[Explain This to Me: How 2016 legislation shifted property tax burden from commercial land to homeowners]

Although Canyon County, the City of Nampa and the City of Caldwell initially said they would take the same deal, they announced last week they would not be participating after all.

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All three opted to not increase property taxes either but were concerned about accepting the funding out of concern they wouldn’t meet the criteria, according to the Idaho Press. Ada County will also be opting into the program and will receive $16.4 million, which will be used to pay for the jail, Central District Health and juvenile services, the Idaho Press also reported.

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Margaret Carmel
Margaret is a BoiseDev reporter focused on the City of Boise, housing, homelessness and growth. Contact her at margaret@boisedev.com or by phone at (757)705-8066.

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