Pandemic property tax relief bill passes the House

Mar 11, 2021
Written by Mark Johnson, Senior Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs

House Bill 1332, prime sponsored by Rep. Pat Sullivan (D-Covington), would allow businesses struggling during the pandemic to defer their 2021 property taxes via the establishment of a payment plan. The measure passed the House 96 to 1.

To qualify, a business must demonstrate a loss of at least 25% of revenue for calendar year 2020 compared to calendar year 2019. A deferral must be requested from the county treasurer on forms developed by the Department of Revenue. Penalties and interest are not to be applied to taxes due under the deferral payment plan so long as the terms of the payment plan are fully met.

An owner of real property receiving a deferral must pass on the entire benefit to a tenant or sublessee if the tenant or sublessee is required by the lease or other contract to pay the property tax expense of the owner.

HB 1332 is another response to the many struggling businesses caused by the pandemic and forced shutdowns and capacity limits. WR supports this and other bills that are aimed at keeping Washington’s businesses open.