Senator Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) announced that her bill to assist disabled veterans by expanding California’s Disabled Property Exemption program passed the Senate Military and Veterans Affairs Committee today. SB 658 will authorize county assessors to make available the state’s property tax exemption proportional to the disability rating percentage issued by the department responsible for their discharge from service.
Current law allows disabled veterans to request a reduction on their home’s assessed value. However, many veterans are unaware that unless they are 100% disabled, totally blind or have lost one or more limbs, they would not qualify. This means many veterans are turned away.
“As it stands today, even if a veteran were to have a 90% disability rating, they would be ineligible for a property tax exemption,” said Senator Grove. “Many veterans who are severely disabled as a result of their service to the United States are turned away when seeking this exemption. We can do better for those who have sacrificed for our state and nation.”
San Bernardino County Assessor-Recorder Bob Dutton has joined Senator Grove in sponsoring SB 658 and has first-hand experience in assisting veterans with these issues.
“Unfortunately, many of our brave service members come back home with disabilities that will impact them and their families for the rest of their lives. SB 658 expands much needed property tax relief to thousands of California’s disabled veterans,” said Assessor-Recorder Bob Dutton. “Thank you Senator Grove for your steadfast leadership in helping California’s veterans receive the benefits they deserve.”
In 2018, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimated that in California, there were more than ten thousand homeless veterans, which was five times more than the next highest state.
“SB 658 could be that one saving grace for a veteran, helping them to keep their home and get them through their hardship until they can get back on their feet,” said Senator Grove. “I am grateful for Bob Dutton’s leadership and support on this bill, as well as his continued service to veterans and their families.”
SB 658 passed with a bipartisan vote of 5 to 0. The measure will next be heard by the Senate Committee on Appropriations.