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California congressman gets Maryland tax break after declaring Anne Arundel waterfront home as primary residence

Bloomberg News is reporting that Rep. Pete Stark, a California Democrat who is the second-ranking majority member of the Ways and Means Committee, has received tax breaks for declaring his $1.7 million waterfront home in Anne Arundel County as his primary residence.

Stark received state and county homestead tax breaks worth $3,853 in 2007 and 2008, Bloomberg's Tim Burger reported. Stark told the news organization that while he lives in the home for about two-thirds of the year, he votes in the California Bay Area district he represents, and he and his wife have California driver's licenses.

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Assessment officials in Maryland have said they will look into the matter.

A week ago, the Associated Press reported that Rep. Eliot Engel, a Democrat who represents the Bronx, was declared ineligible to receive a homestead exemption in Montgomery County, where county officials now say they will review the property records of members of Congress living there.

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Maryland property records show that Stark's home – owned with his wife, Deborah – is valued for tax purposes at $1.7 million, and sits on 6.35 acres of waterfront property in Harwood. It appears he has owned the home since 1992.

The area of Pete Stark's Chesapeake Bay home, in Anne Arundel County's Harwood neighborhood, which he claims as a primary residence.


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