Senators Looney, Daily, Leone: “Veterans should not be penalized for their service to our country.”
June 16, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — Senate Majority Leader Martin Looney (D-New Haven / Hamden), Senator Carlo Leone (D-Stamford), and Senator Eileen Daily (D-Westbrook) say passage of Senate Bill 377 will give municipalities the option to waive interest owed on property taxes by members of the armed services who are on active duty.
The issue was first brought to Senator Looney’s attention by a constituent who, while he was serving, missed his property tax bill. The constituent paid the bill but told Senator Looney that he thought the system, which required that he pay interest, was unfair. Senator Looney agreed and worked with Senator Leone, co-chair of the Select Committee on Veteran’s Affairs, and Senator Eileen Daily, co-char of the Finance Committee, to change state law.
“This simply gives towns the discretion to forgive interest owed by members of the armed forces,” wrote Senator Looney. “Active duty members of the armed forces are often away from their mail for significant periods. They should not be penalized for their service to our country. I believe this is a matter of fairness and a small recognition for the members of the military who are sacrificing so much.”
“Veterans have many financial strains already burdening them and this is one small way we can alleviate a problem for them and their families,” said Senator Leone. “This is really a common-sense change that offers our veterans some well deserved flexibility.”
“Accrued interest on overdue property taxes when the property owner is away on active military duty simply sends the wrong message about how much we all respect and honor the commitment made by men and women in the armed forces,” Senator Daily said. “Literally dozens of co-sponsors for this legislation and literally zero dissenting votes throughout the committee process suggest wholesale acknowledgement that automatic interest charges should be forgiven in these cases.”
The Veterans of Foreign Wars testified in favor of the legislation at a public hearing in February at the Legislative Office Building. “The VFW is in favor of this legislation, as it provides some modicum of relief to those who have given much in defense of their nation,” said Robert A. Hunter.