City makes tax exemptions easier for elderly, disabled

VIRGINIA BEACH — City Council voted Tuesday night to increase the number of income exclusions for residents participating in the city’s Elderly and Disabled Tax Relief Program.

Added to the number of income exemptions for the program were any disability payments from a government or agency, and any payments made to providers for the care of children in foster care.

“We currently don’t have anyone in the city that qualifies for foster care exemptions,” said Chief Deputy Commissioner of the Revenue Eric Schmudde. “But we wanted to make sure that those incomes are exempt for people in the future.”

Although the income exemptions passed by council Tuesday will save taxpayers a total of only $6,000 — the tax relief program overall saves residents more than that.

In Virginia Beach, 5,061 residents take part in the elderly and disabled tax relief program. The program saves those residents — and costs the city in lost tax revenue — $10,030,771 in FY 2017-2018, Schmudde said.

A total of 7,492 residents take part in the city’s other tax relief program — which applies to real estate, personal property, and mobile home property taxes — and includes relief for qualifying disabled veterans.

Schmudde said Virginia Beach residents participating in the city’s tax relief programs saved $16,894,786 during FY 2017-2018, which includes the elderly and disabled tax relief.

For the purposes of calculating income in accordance with Virginia Beach tax relief requirements, the city already provides an exemption for reverse mortgage payments. There are also $10,000 income deductions for a relative living in the house other than a spouse, and also for permanently and totally disabled homeowners.

The effective date of the exclusions voted on by council Tuesday will be July 1, 2019.

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