The Cape Coral, Florida, home of McHenry County Sheriff Keith and his wife Marge Nygren has the following on the tax bill:
NYGREN KEITH R + MARGARETE A
5131 SW 19TH AVE
CAPE CORAL FL
It currently has a $50,000 Homestead Exemption.
Who discovered this little tidbit?
Former Democratic Party McHenry County Coroner candidate Dave Bachmann. He published it on his blog
Here is the history on the tax bill since the home was purchased in 2006:
What’s a Homestead Exemption in Florida?
The information below was found on the Lee County Assessor’s web site:
What Is A Homestead Exemption?
Homestead Exemption is a constitutional benefit of up to a $50,000 exemption removed from the assessed value of your property. It is granted to those applicants who timely file by March 1, possess title to real property and are bona fide Florida residents living in the dwelling and making it their permanent home on January 1 [emphasis added]. Properties granted Homestead Exemption automatically receive the “Save Our Homes” benefit. This is a constitutional benefit approved by the Florida voters in 1992. It places a limitation of 3% on annual assessment increase on Homestead properties beginning with the 1995 tax year. For properties granted Homestead Exemption in the prior years, that assessed value will be the base value for the implementation of “Save Our Homes”. Thereafter, the assessed value will not increase more than 3% or the Consumer Price Index, whichever is less. Exceptions to that limitation include new additions or construction that escaped taxation in the past. Another exception would occur when a homestead property sells: the assessed value returns to fair market value in the year following the sale. That fair market value assessment then becomes the base value for “Save Our Homes” purpose for the new owner/homestead applicant.
The Lee County, Florida, Assessor’s web site lists the following requirements for eligibility:
In addition to having legal title/ownership of the property and actually permanently occupying ( residing) at the property as of January 1 ** you must meet Florida residency requirements such as Driver’s License, Voter registration, Tag, Domicile, etc. as of the filing deadline (but no later than April 1) or you may not qualify for the current tax year.
Here’s some more information about eligibility for the Florida tax break:
Applicants must hold a valid Florida Driver’s License…(A “Valid in Florida ONLY” license is not acceptable).
Florida vehicle license plate (tag) number is required. If you own multiple vehicles, at least one vehicle must be registered in Florida.
If you ARE a U.S. Citizen – provide your Lee County Florida Voter’s Registration Number or – if you do not vote – you will be required to complete and record a Declaration of Domicile. (There is no fee for applying for homestead –however, there is fee for recording the Declaration of Domicile). If you have not already recorded the Domicile, YOU MUST APPLY IN PERSON. The domicile form is available at the Appraiser’s Office.
Social Security Number is required for all applicants and the spouse of all applicants. If married, you must provide your spouse’s Social Security number even though the spouse is not an owner of the property and is not applying for exemption.
Date of birth for applicant(s).
Proof that you (or your spouse) do not receive a residency based exemption or tax credit in another jurisdiction –You cannot claim a residency based homestead exemption, tax credit or rollback in any other state or county while receiving the homestead exemption in Lee County. In addition, if you are married, your spouse cannot receive exemption, tax credit or rollback in any other jurisdiction. Section 6 (b) Article VII, Fl Constitution states that not more than one exemption shall be allowed any individual or family unit. You will be asked to sign an affidavit stating that you have been informed and that you are responsible for removing any other exemption in order to qualify in Lee County.
More recently there appears to also be a Senior Homestead Exemption.