City Council Approves Tax Relief Plan

By: Autria Godfrey
By: Autria Godfrey

June 19, 2006

Tonight the Charlottesville City Council met and one of the items on the agenda will affect how some homeowners deal with financial issues.

One of the final items on the agenda was the tax relief plan for low and moderate-income homeowners. The plan aims to give a $250 grant to those qualifying. The city council is working hard to promote and preserve home ownership in the Charlottesville area.

Councilman Blake Caravati explained, "In the past budget year, we appropriated $420,000 dollars to fund just the tax relief so in the coming year you'll see additional hearing and additional ordinances regarding the loan and grant program."

As the cost of living increases each year, more residents are turning to Piedmont Housing Alliance where Peter Loach understands and helps with their situation.

"It's really for people who are living in the home, it's the only home they own [and] they're struggling to make those payments because of their income situation and rising property values," Peter said.

In order to give residents time to handle their tax paperwork, the plan is set to be effective July 1, 2006. To be eligible, residents must make sure they meet all qualifications and then file an application with the commissioner of revenue before September 1st.

Councilman Caravati estimates that the response will be great.

"Our demographics show anywhere between 2 and 3,100 will be eligible, but one of the hard things to predict is income," he said.

Tonight was the last meeting for Councilman Blake Caravati and Rob Schilling. Mayor Brown presented both men with plaques in honor of their hard work and service to the city of Charlottesville.

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