Mayor Rawlings-Blake's Statement On The Passage Of Administration's Taxpayer Recompense Program

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Brandon M. Scott
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BALTIMORE, Md. (May 5, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake issued the following statement after the City Council passed her administration’s Taxpayer Recompense proposal to help residents unfairly impacted by State miscalculations in the Commission on Historical and Architectural Preservation (CHAP) Tax Credit program:

“No citizen should have to carry more than their fair share of the tax burden. This program will help many hardworking Baltimore families who, through no fault of their own, were given either excessive CHAP tax credits or CHAP credits that were too low, in some cases resulting in larger-than-expected tax bills. These families shouldn’t bear the burden of a mistake made by state government, and we will continue doing everything we can locally to make them whole. While it would have been easy to ignore these inconsistencies and kick the can down the road for future administrations, fixing the problem now is the right thing to do. By taking action now, the City of Baltimore will continue working to ensure that all taxpayers are treated fairly and equitably.”

Last year the City of Baltimore took over calculations of the Commission on Historical and Architectural Preservation (CHAP) Tax Credit from the State of Maryland. Audits conducted by the Rawlings-Blake Administration revealed inconsistencies in the process being performed by the State of Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation (SDAT). These inconsistencies may have resulted in some taxpayers being given an excessive credit or given a credit that was too low.

This program is another reform in a series of efforts Mayor Rawlings Blake has undertaken to reform substantial portions of the city’s tax system that had been neglected for many years. Some of the administration’s initiatives include implementing efforts to stop Homestead Tax Credit fraud; automating an inefficient, decades-old process for tax credit processing; and auditing Baltimore City’s special tax credits to ensure they are being processed correctly. At the same time, the mayor has also introduced the Targeted Homeowners Tax Credit, reducing the average homeowner’s tax bill by $240.

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