Mayor's property tax cut introduced

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's proposal to reduce the city's property tax rate for homeowners by 20 cents by the year 2020 was introduced Monday to the City Council.

The proposal, which is dependent on revenue from the planned slots casino, would gradually lower property tax rates for owner-occupied homes over the next eight years. The city's property tax rate is more than double that of the surrounding counties.

"In order for us to grow the city, we need to improve public safety, public schools as well as the property tax rates," Rawlings-Blake said Monday. Rawlings-Blake first introduced her property tax plan during last summer's mayoral race.

Under Rawlings-Blake's plan, 90 percent of the revenue from the slots casino would go to reducing property taxes and 10 percent would fund part of a school construction initiative.

"The most important thing for us was property tax relief," she said of the slots proceeds.

Under Rawlings-Blake's legislation, an owner-occupied home in Baltimore valued at $200,000 would see a $40 tax cut in 2013 and a $400 reduction in 2020, according to the city.

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